Concern over month-long closure of main Kirkintilloch route

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Local MP Stuart McDonald and Councillor Paul Ferretti are asking roads bosses and a house builder to rethink a planned four-week closure of a main road.

It is proposed that Birdston Road, between Kirkintilloch and Milton of Campsie, will shut from Monday, April 23.

CALA Homes has started work on a new housing development at Birdston Road comprising 43 detached homes.

As the road is the main route out to Milton of Campsie, Lennoxtown and the villages beyond, the two SNP politicians fear its lengthy closure will have a significant impact on local people – and could cause problems on alternative routes.

Mr McDonald is pressing for alternative options to be looked at again.

He said: “The complete closure of Birdston Road for five weeks will cause real stress for local people, especially commuters travelling every day. It’s fair to say people are surprised and angry, and want to have alternative options looked at again.

“Whether that be through partial closures, phased closures, or looking at engineering solutions – anything that will make travel in and out 
Milton of Campsie an easier over the next phase of development would be very welcome.

“I also worry that alternative roads are far from ideal for such volumes of traffic.

“In the past I’ve asked the council to consider speed restrictions on the roads out of Milton of Campsie towards Lennoxtown and Kilsyth, as these are at least as dangerous as Birdston Road which has a 40 mph limit.”

Councillor Ferretti said: “I share residents’ concerns. This will likely have a detrimental impact for local businesses in the village, and it will put an additional stress on local commuters heading to their work.

“I hope that all feasible alternative options, such as a single lane with traffic lights, have been considered before coming to this decision; rather than simply acquiescing to what would be the most convenient for the housing 
developer.”

A spokesperson for CALA Homes (West), said: “We apologise for the inconvenience caused by this necessary step which was agreed in close consultation with East Dunbartonshire Council and Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT).

“Following extensive dialogue with both bodies, the safety of all involved was considered to be paramount, forcing a full road closure. “Every effort will be made to complete all works as quickly as possible within the agreed timescale and, in the meantime, we will be doing all we can to minimise impact on road users in the area.

“Diversions will be well signposted while First Glasgow bus services will continue, using an alternative route.”

Joint Leader of East Dunbartonshire Council, Councillor Andrew Polson,

said, “While this road closure will undoubtedly cause disruption, I would

like to assure local people that everything possible is being done to make

sure that the work is carried out quickly and with minimum impact.

?The work is essential and involves excavation of Birdston Road by Scottish

Power so cannot be completed without affecting traffic. We have considered

all possible options including temporary traffic management and partial

closures but on safety grounds, a full closure for up to a maximum of five

weeks is deemed to be the best approach.

?We have been able to give advance warning, there will be a signed

diversion route*, buses will be diverted to agreed new routes and

pedestrian access will be maintained throughout. This gives residents a

level of certainty throughout the duration of the works that couldn?t be

provided if we took a different approach.

?I understand people?s concerns and apologise for the inconvenience. The

developer will contact affected residents and businesses directly and we

will work with them to monitor progress on the site with a view to

minimising the closure and disruption.?