29th October 2021

North Ayrshire Council has welcomed a major funding boost which will allow a radical improvement of the B714.

It was confirmed this week that the council has been successful in securing £23.7m from the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund for major improvements to the road.

Upgrading the B714 will significantly improve road connectivity between North Ayrshire and other parts of Scotland, helping to provide better road links and encourage investment in the area.

Councillor Jim Montgomerie, Cabinet Member for Green New Deal and Sustainability, said: “Upgrading the B714 has been a long-held strategic transport priority for the Council – it is the missing link between the existing Three Towns bypass and the Dalry bypass.

“Our ambitions are for this project to be much more than just upgrading the road and the project will significantly improve active travel infrastructure along the route, helping connect communities and provide improved active travel opportunities for residents, and we will deliver environmental enhancements along the route too.

“This successful bid is a key part of our recovery plan for North Ayrshire. We are determined to use every lever at our disposal to help our communities recover from the pandemic and that’s why we will be setting aside £3million of the Council’s own funds to support this project.”

The improvements will see the B714 upgraded between the A737(T) (south of Dalry) to the A78(T) at the Sharphill roundabout. This will include the realignment of sections of the route to improve the road geometry and the construction of a new link between the B714 and the A737(T) close to the Dalry Bypass junction, south of Dalry.

The B714 will remain a single carriage however the entire route would be widened. Active travel and environmental enhancements will also be delivered as part of the programme.  The project is at early stage in development and design and initial consultations are underway with landowners, community, transport and business stakeholders to help inform plans.

Islands Cabinet Portfolio lead and Cabinet Member for Post Covid-Renewal, Councillor Alex Gallagher, said: “The upgrade of the B714 can be a catalyst for economic regeneration across North Ayrshire, including our islands.

“In addition to improving the connectivity between North Ayrshire and Glasgow, the Central Belt and wider motorway network, the upgrade will have a huge impact for tourism, economic growth and provide enhanced links to the Arran and Cumbrae Ferry services.”

North Ayrshire Council is also developing a further bid to the Levelling-up Fund in partnership with South Ayrshire Council and this will be considered by Cabinet on Tuesday, November 2.

This project – which would be worth potentially up to £20milion to each authority – is aimed at creating new commercial estate provision on vacant and derelict land sites, potentially on sites such as Irvine’s include Kyle Road, Annickbank, Marine Drive and i3.

The bid also aims to create and expand a new electric vehicle charging infrastructure; new e-bike charging infrastructure; new and improved active travel infrastructure between the sites, and improved public transport infrastructure including new bus stops and laybys to support existing and future bus routes.