Council chiefs have struck a £35 million deal for a massive expansion of Scotland’s newest city.
Balfour Beatty has been awarded the contract for the first phase of major new congestion-busting traffic plan for Perth.
The long-awaited new A9/A85 junction and link road to Bertha Park will unlock development land to the west of the city.
Around 100 construction jobs will be created during the three-year lifespan of the work, including several apprenticeship opportunities.
Construction crews are expected to arrive on site late next month.
The scheme represents the first stage for the Perth Transport Futures project, which aims to improve air quality in the city centre, combat congestion problems and provide vital new roads to support economic growth.
The scheme involves the controversial creation of a new road which runs past Perth Crematorium. Hundreds objected to the scheme, claiming it impacted on woodland where ashes of loved ones have been scattered.
Councillor John Kellas, who is convener of the council’s enterprise and infrastructure committee said: “Residents, visitors and businesses in and around the city will all benefit from this scheme, with the improved junction and new link road allowing a better flow of both local and through traffic, as well as improvements to the air quality in the city centre.
“Providing a second major access to Inveralmond will also provide relief on the network at peak times when the high levels of traffic using Inveralmond roundabout can cause significant tailbacks.”
He added: “Improving the transport routes around Perth provides a significant part of the infrastructure necessary to deliver on the ambitious programme of improvements set out in the Perth City Plan published earlier this year.”
Hector Macaulay, regional managing director for Balfour Beatty in Scotland, added: “We are really pleased to have been awarded this key contract and to be part of the exciting development plans in Perth and Kinross.
“We have a vast wealth of experience in delivering significant highway infrastructure schemes across Scotland including the A9, A90 and M90.”
He said: “We have had the opportunity to collaborate with the council at an early stage and ultimately provide price certainty and best value.
“Furthermore, delivery of this project will provide significant opportunities for local sub-contractors and suppliers, ensuring that the Perth and Kinross community not only benefits from greatly improved infrastructure, but also from the added economic benefit delivered through this scheme.”
The Perth Transport Futures Project has four phases and will include the development of the Cross Tay Link Road.
As well as the new junction and Berth Park link road, phase one will involve a roundabout on Ruthvenfield Road, a bridge over the River Almond and a footbridge over the A9 linking Tulloch to the Inveralmond Industrial Estate.
Work is due to start next month and should be finished by spring 2019.