THE Transport Minister has announced a major investment of government funds into securing a long-term solution for the Rest and Be Thankful road.

The A83, known as the Rest and Be Thankful, forms a vital transport link for Argyll communities and businesses, with around 1.3 million vehicles passing through it every year.

But due to its vulnerability to landslides from the hillside above, the road has been subject to protracted roadworks, with travel times regularly being hit by long delays.

Now Transport Scotland has announced its intention to appoint Atkins WSP Joint Venture to progress design and development work for a long-term solution – which looks to be a route through Glen Croe.

The new £25m Government investment will be used to design, promote and construct the potential solutions. 

Why does the Rest and Be Thankful need a "solution"?

In 2020, the road was closed for a total of 200 days, requiring cars to be ferried along a single-track military road to bypass works.

Between 2007 and the beginning of this year, the Scottish Government had spent £87 million on the entirety of the A83 - with another £1.3m being awarded to an engineering firm in January to undertake preliminary ground investigations for a new stretch of road.

READ MORE: Rest and Be Thankful: Drones could be used to plant trees at Scotland's 'most infamous road'

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Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth stressed the need for an “urgent solution” to the road which she hopes will “bring certainty to the lives of those directly impacted when the A83 is cut off”.

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She added: “This investment from Scottish Government represents a significant milestone because it will allow the vital design work needed to commence at pace.

“Ministers share the urgency communities and businesses place on maintaining and improving connectivity of this vital route, which is why we are progressing measures for the short, medium and long term in tandem.

“We will bring forward proposals for the medium term by the end of this year, with an announcement on the preferred route option for the long term by spring 2023.”