The New Crossin ove the River Don

The new crossing over the River Don, is a proposed scheme comprising of a new car, cycle and pedestrian crossing at a point between the Danestone and Grandholm areas on the north side of the River Don, and the Tillydrone area the river’s south bank, in Aberdeen (figure 1.1).
The River Don provides a natural barrier to north-south travel movements across both Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. Within the Aberdeen area, the River Don currently has two main crossings points; the Bridge of Don located in the King Street and A956 corridor; and Persley Bridge located in the A90 and Parkway corridors (Davidson, 2010, pp1). The bridges crossing the Don have suffered from congestion for many years, and in recent times have become known for perhaps the most notorious bottlenecks within the Aberdeen road network. The congestion in and around these areas impacts on both commuter movements and freight travel, with delays established as a regular cause of frustration for many motorists (Davidson, 2010, pp2). Therefore, the principle impact of introducing a new crossing over the river Don will be a transport impact, specifically of a reduction in congestion with minimal negative environmental, economic or social impacts.
However, the core of Aberdeen’s congestion problems is due to the allowance of suburban growth and the expansion of satellite settlements. With this comes the overwhelming reliance on the car as transport for access to the city centre for employment, education and services (Patterson & Rogers, 2011, pp2). The preferred solution, proposed by Aberdeen City Council to ease congestion at the two locations, is to continue the same policies that have created the current problem in the first instance; continued car provision. Subsequently, ...

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...the environment in terms of loss of habitat, increased emissions and poor air quality. In turn this will result in worsening respiratory health for the residents in proximity of the proposed crossing. It will also affect about 300 residents who will be served compulsory purchase orders, resulting in the partial loss of houses and disrupting livelihoods. There is a need for a solution to the congestion problem within Aberdeen’s road network, but the third Don Crossing is not the answer. There are many alternative solutions that have not been considered fully, that would result in less disruption to many local residents. Other alternatives such as congestion charges, car sharing and more public transport links throughout the network will encourage sustained decongestion, rather than short-term solution of creating a small capacity increase in the current road network.
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