Cathkin Relief Road, which is a new 7.3m wide carriageway between the junctions of the existing Cathkin Bypass/Burnside Road and Fernhill Road/Croftfoot Road/Blairbeth Road in Rutherglen, is now fully open.
The new road was welcomed by the Depute Leader or South Lanarkshire Council, as well as Ministers from the UK and Scottish Governments.
And among the first VIPs to visit the new road were pupils from four local primary schools – Burnside, Cathkin, Spittal and St Mark’s Primary Schools.
The anticipated final cost of the project is £18.6million and in addition to the new carriageway there is a 2m wide footway on the south side and a 3m wide combined cycleway/footway on the north side.
There are three crossing points along the new route, one of which is a controlled crossing. The controlled crossing is around halfway along the new stretch of road.
Councillor Jackie Burns, the Depute Leader of the council, said: “We are delighted to be able to deliver the first major transport project of the Glasgow City Region City Deal.
“Cathkin Relief Road supports the council’s objective of enhancing the local and strategic road network.
“It will improve infrastructure to employment areas across Rutherglen and Cambuslang and reduce traffic impacts on neighbouring residential type roads.
“The road will also reduce congestion at peak times which has the knock-on effect of also reducing carbon emissions.
“Another benefit will be an improvement to public transport reliability and bus/rail integration in the area, primarily because the new road will remove congestion and through traffic from existing routes.
“The capacity and quality of the wider footpath and cycle network in the area has been enhanced which will improve access for cyclists and pedestrians. The new paths are also DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) compliant.”
Economy Secretary Keith Brown said: “This is a landmark day for the Glasgow City Region City Deal with the first transport project completed and set to improve local access to employment and relieve pressure on Rutherglen town centre.
“The Scottish Government is investing £500m over the lifespan of the deal and we are fully committed to working closely with city region partners to maximise the opportunities created through the Glasgow City Region City Deal.”
Andrew Dunlop, the UK Government Minister for Scotland, said: “It is great news that we have reached the first major infrastructure milestone in the Glasgow Region City Deal with the opening of the Cathkin Relief Road.
“UK City deals are all about supporting cities and regions to become powerhouses of investment and opportunity. The UK Government is working closely with the Scottish Government and local partners to increase economic growth, jobs and prosperity.”
The council’s contractor for the project has been Land Engineering. They will continue to provide maintenance to the path network for the next five years.
Stuart Dillett, Managing Director, Land Engineering, said, “It has been a real honour for Land Engineering to be involved in delivering the Cathkin Relief Road, the first major transport project of the Glasgow City Region City Deal.
“Like most major projects of this type, the construction of the Cathkin Relief Road did present a number of significant challenges during the build period and everyone involved has had to work very hard to deliver the finished product to the standard of quality and appearance we believe is evident today.
“During the entire process we have striven to be a good neighbour to those local residents who live around the site and we would like to take the opportunity to thank them most sincerely for their patience and understanding during this time.
“We are confident the new infrastructure will significantly enhance the local roads network and we are especially pleased we will continue to be involved with this great project through our on-going contract to ensure that all of the landscaping works on either side of the new road become fully established.”