Fife Council has appointed a development manager to oversee a key part of the £70 million Levenmouth rail link project.
Michael Drever takes up his post on Monday and will work to ensure the community benefits from the long-awaited development.
He has been seconded from Fife Council’s economic development service, where he worked on capital project as part of the city deals process.
Transport Secretary Michael Matheson announced a £10m Levenmouth Blueprint group, funded jointly by the Scottish Government and the council, when he gave the rail link the go-ahead in August.
It has taken until now to make an appointment.
Campaigners have welcomed the move but said planned consultations on sites for railway stations at Cameron Bridge and Leven had fallen victim to coronavirus.
They also expressed concern that the project could suffer delays as a result of the pandemic.
“A key part of Michael’s role will be to work with communities and stakeholders,” they said.
“The current critical situation with covid-19 will prevent direct contact but remote working may allow some progress on the rail link and active travel projects.
“Network Rail has yet to appoint a promised liaison or communication post.”
They added: “When the world emerges from this unprecedented upheaval, questions may arise regarding public spending and even investment programmes.
“Since Levenmouth has been ‘self-isolated’ for the past 50 years, we hope the project is not sidelined or long delayed when things return to normal.”
Leven Labour councillor Colin Davidson has also hailed the development.
“It’s good news about the future of Levenmouth to share at a time of trepidation and uncertainty,” he said.
“The programme manager has been appointed and he’ll be in post from Monday.
“This will push the project on and allow for greater involvement in the project for the local communities.”
A Levenmouth Reconnected leadership group and a working group, involving agencies like Transport Scotland, Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa), Network Rail, ScotRail and the council, has already been created.