The lead campaigner behind plans for a flyover at a Mearns blackspot has spoken of her joy that work will finally start.
Transport Scotland is planning to award a £300,000 contract to Allied Exploration and Geotechnics for the A90 Laurencekirk junction improvement scheme.
The ground investigation will start early next month and will take around eight weeks before a flyover is built at the site as a solution to the deadly A90/A937 junction near Laurencekirk.
The trunk road has previously been named one of the most dangerous in the UK, with the Laurencekirk stretch seeing a string of fatalities.
Florist Jill Fotheringham from Laurencekirk got involved in 2004 after a number of deaths on the route.
She said she was tired of continually producing wreaths at her shop in Montrose and began the campaign for action following the death of a local man at the junction.
She said: “I am delighted. This is the first physical piece of work we will see on the road.
“I know there has been plenty of work going on behind the scenes but to be able to see them actually doing something on site will be great.
“I have been saying for years that I wanted them to just get on with it and get the flyover built. However, I think any progress is good and I am happy to finally see something being done.”
The centre and north junctions at Laurencekirk from the A90 will remain open as part of the £24 million scheme.
Jill said: “I’ve just moved back to Laurencekirk and still work in Montrose, so I use the junction twice a day – and I find it horrific.
“It isn’t just the local area this affects. The junction is so important to the people of Montrose and it makes such a difference to the people living there and working in Aberdeen.”
It is expected traffic measures will be put in place on the A90 when work begins with Transport Scotland saying it wants to keep disruption to a minimum.
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine Conservative MP Andrew Bowie has welcomed a contract award and progress on the long-awaited improvement works.
He said: “It is now more than three years since the Aberdeen City Region Deal was agreed, and people will want to see these projects moving forward.
“This is an important piece of work, which should greatly reduce the risk of accidents at a dangerous spot on the A90.
“It will prevent traffic having to turn onto the busy and fast-moving dual carriageway.
“I’m sure locals will be happy to hear progress being made, and they will be keen to see this work completed as quickly as possible.”