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Fri August 23 2019

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Scotland consults on roads maintenance

2 Jul A committee of the Scottish parliament is seeking views on the effectiveness of road maintenance and whether current funding levels are sufficient.

The Rural Economy & Connectivity Committee is looking for views from a wide range of road users.

Committee convener Edward Mountain said: “The road network in Scotland is thousands of miles long and is the vital link in connecting communities and supporting both national and local economies.

“We want to hear from all road users across Scotland, from large commercial transport operators, small local businesses, roads authorities, community groups and individuals so that we can develop a deep understanding of how effectively Scotland’s roads are being maintained.”

Scotland’s road network consists of almost 56,000km of roads, as well as footways, bridges, lightning, signs and lines. Local authorities are responsible for 25,600km of classified roads and 26,800km of unclassified roads. Transport Scotland is responsible for 3,600km of motorways and trunk roads, which make up only around 6% of the road network but account for a third of the traffic.

Audit Scotland, in a series of reports on roads maintenance in recent years, has been critical of the standard of local roads, within the context of declining budgets.

The output from the exercise is expected to feed into future Scottish government budget plans and policy development.

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In particular, the Committee would like to hear views on:

How have recent spending decisions on roads maintenance affected the quality of Scotland’s roads, road users, businesses, public services, and the economy?

If spending on roads maintenance continues at current levels, what could be the likely effects on the above groups?

How could any negative effects of reduced road spending best be addressed?

Is the current model of funding and delivering roads maintenance, which is split between Transport Scotland and local authorities, the most economic and efficient option?

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