Transport Scotland officially opens M8 motorway project
Transport Scotland has officially opened its £500m M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project to traffic.
The project is the first part of a combined £1.7bn investment by the agency and included the addition of a new seven-mile stretch on the M8 motorway.
According to analysis by the national transport agency for Scotland, journey times have been significantly reduced by 20 minutes, as the new project has now allowed the vehicles to travel along the M8 at an average speed of almost 70mph.
The motorway improvement project is said to have contributed more than £1bn to Scotland’s economy, as well as improved business connectivity between Edinburgh and Glasgow and beyond.
It is also set to reduce traffic on the local roads, which is expected to result in a reduction of more than 100 accidents on an annual basis, and accident savings of more than £118m over a three-decade period.
Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “The M8 is a vital link in the central belt and this newly completed section will help connect people to business, leisure and education opportunities and also creates a better environment for companies to do business.
“With the completion of this project, and three others - the Queensferry crossing, the first section of the A9 dualling and the Aberdeen bypass - by next spring, more than 250km of new roads will have been completed in the last ten years – representing a total investment in construction of £2.81bn.”
The project has created training and employment opportunities for more than 8,000 workers.
Image: The M8 M73 M74 Motorway Improvements Project is part of a £1.7bn investment. Photo: courtesy of Transport Scotland.