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28.06.17

Views sought on future of Scottish Borders ahead of year-end report

Those who travel through the Scottish Borders are being encouraged to take part in a wide-ranging transport survey that will help shape key decisions taken by Transport Scotland.

The online survey, which covers rail as well as road, bus and cycling, is one element of the Borders Transport Corridors Study being undertaken by the country’s government.

Transport minister Humza Yousaf said: “In the Scottish government’s Programme for Government a commitment was given to examine the case for an extension of the Borders railway along with improvements to the A1, A7 and A68.

“Transport Scotland and its consultants are now considering a number of issues including accessibility in the Borders and links between its communities and the key markets of Edinburgh, Carlisle and Newcastle. The study will identify issues and opportunities on transport routes and identify where improvements can be made.”

The comments received as part of the consultation will help inform the final report, which is expected by the end of the year.

The survey asks respondents what their regular transport routine looks like, exploring what improvements would have the biggest impact on their ability to travel within the Scottish Borders.

It is also considering the biggest impediments to travelling by rail in the region, such as journey time to station, timetable issues, service frequency, journey times, ticket cost, lack of parking at stations, lack of direct routes and train capacity.

Earlier this year, Yousaf had revealed that plans to potentially extend the Borders railway to Carlisle were being considered as part of the same transport study. Jacobs UK Ltd was hired to write a report looking at these and other potential improvements to the region, with the company expecting that the study would be concluded by November.

Its findings will then inform how the Scottish government refreshes its Strategic Transport Projects Review.

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