A830 Arisaig to Loch Nan Uamh Improvements

Environmental restrictions and regulations played a key part in this project to upgrade the last section of single track trunk road in the UK.

Client: The Highland Council
Value: £22.8m
Location: Arisaig

The project involved the design and construction of approximately 7.5km of road of A830 Trunk Road between Arisaig and Loch Nan Uamh, a highly scenic area on the West coast of Scotland. A large section of the road is in a special area of conservation (SAC), so environmental issues were paramount.

The project involved large quantities of earthworks (150,000m3 of peat and 350,000m3 of rock) and the construction of a number of reinforced concrete arch structures to cross the burns and watercourses at Larachmore, Brunery, Borrodale and Beasdale, along with a structure to support the new road at Larachmore Gardens.

As rock blasting took place near to the railway line, possessions had to be booked and blasting designed to minimise the risk of damage to the existing railway infrastructure.

After the project won the the prestigious Saltire Society Award for Civil Engineering design in the Environment Category, Councillor John Laing, Chairman of The Highland Council’s Transport Environment and Community Services Committee, said: “I am delighted at this good news and this reflects the exceptionally hard work put into the project by the Council’s Project Design Unit based in Alness as well as the efforts of the Contractor, Morrison Construction.   

“A major effort was made on this scheme to mitigate the highly sensitive environment which this road passes through including the Special area of Conservation and the National Scenic Area and this is reflected in the high quality design which blends into the surrounding landscape.  Close working with Transport Scotland has helped achieve this significant award and visitors and travellers alike to the Road to the Isles will appreciate the scenic quality of the new road.” 

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