Upgrading the local transport network

Brian Whittle MSP and Bill Grant MP with members of the A77 Action Group who attended the Ayrshire Transport Summit.
Brian Whittle MSP and Bill Grant MP with members of the A77 Action Group who attended the Ayrshire Transport Summit.

Improving Ayrshire’s transport infrastructure was the topic of conversation at a recent summit meeting of three Ayrshire councils.

Politicians and transport experts met with businesses, public sector bodies and volunteer groups to work out the best way of getting Ayrshire’s transport network into the fast lane.

The event highlighted the importance of investment for the long term in the region, with calls for improvements to trunk roads like the A77 as well as a renewed push to make use of existing assets like Prestwick Airport and the ports at Ayr, Girvan, Troon and Hunterston.

There were also calls for better integration of transport services through a shared ticketing system for buses, trains and ferries, more space for bikes on public transport and a greater effort to timetable buses and trains in a way that lets passengers get off one mode of public transport and travel onwards on another without a long wait.

Presentations were made by the director of the Growth Deal, Transport Scotland and transport planning expert John Dales, and during the event a number of workshops discussed active travel, road and rail, sea and airports and public transport.

Among those attending were members of the A77 Action Group and the Ayrshire Bus Users Group, councillors from across Ayrshire, local MSPs Brian Whittle, Jamie Green and John Scott and MP Bill Grant.

Afterwards South of Scotland MSP Brian Whittle said: “Good transport infrastructure is vital to developing the Ayrshire economy and this transport summit was a fantastic opportunity to think about how we can make the most of Ayrshire’s transport network.

“While it’s clear that Ayrshire needs greater investment from the Scottish Government, it was interesting to consider what other actions we can take to join up various different types of transport and give travellers a more seamless experience.”