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B714 Upgrade & Realignment

The upgrading of the B714 has been approved as part of a successful North Ayrshire Council joint funding bid to the UK Government's Levelling Up Fund. The B714 links the Trunk Road network from the A78 Sharphill Roundabout (Three Towns Bypass) to the A737, south of Dalry. It is a vital link for road users travelling to the West Coast and ferry links to Arran and Cumbrae.

The upgrade of the B714 will significantly improve connectivity between North Ayrshire and Glasgow, the Central Belt and wider motorway network. This will substantially increase the potential for tourism and economic development and provide enhanced links to the Arran and Cumbrae Ferry services.

It will contribute to the repopulation of our islands and rural areas by providing improved access between the ferry terminals, mainland settlements, Glasgow, the central belt and wider motorway network. This will ensure that those living in our rural, remote and island communities are well connected and have equitable access to services as those living in the rest of Scotland. It will also divert a significant volume of traffic accessing the A78 away from Kilwinning as traffic will connect directly to the A78 via the new upgraded B714.

Once completed, the B714 Upgrade scheme will comprise over 6.5km of new single carriageway and adjacent segregated 3m wide active travel provision.

NAC will receive £23,693,443 from the Levelling Up Fund and contribute a further 10% match funding to the project.  The delivery of the scheme, subject to securing the necessary consents and permissions, was agreed by the Council’s Cabinet on 25 January 2022 and the report can be found below:

The existing B714 route

 existing b714 route

Project Description/Need for Scheme

The B714 currently follows a traditional route past farm buildings and accesses. There are many narrow sections with tight bends with some localised widening. The current geometry of the road poses a challenge for all road users, especially with regular HGV traffic usage. A continuous carriageway width of 9.3 metres is proposed along the full length of the route and will comprise of two 3.65m lanes with a 1m strip at either side.

The completion of the Dalry Bypass by Transport Scotland in Summer 2019 has reduced traffic volumes in the centre of Dalry. The B714 upgrade project aims to reduce the volume of traffic travelling through Kilwinning on the A737/A738 Trunk Road, which currently passes four schools. This should also realise a reduction in pollution, congestion and the potential for accidents.

A further benefit of the scheme is the inclusion of the 3 metre wide active travel route. This will allow cyclists and pedestrians to travel actively between Dalry and Saltcoats and enjoy a route which would not previously have been attractive. There may also be the possibility to improve facilities for equestrian use around the route. The potential for this will be investigated through the project.

Initial Design Cross Section

initial design cross section1

Business Case Development

The Levelling Up Fund requires that a Full Business Case be prepared and approved before larger transport schemes can formally commence. Until a business case is approved there is a risk that funding could be cancelled if Government policy changes or if the necessary legal permissions or match funding cannot be secured. To mitigate this risk, Development funding is provided at this stage by the UK Government to support the development of the Outline Business Case and the Council has made provision through match funding to support this project.

Current Position and Timeline

Although the outline details of the project have been determined, the business case and design process requires to be completed before construction can begin. The actual route alignment still has to be determined and that will involve a process which includes ground investigation and consultation with landowners.  

The process still to be concluded involves:

  • Business Case Development
  • Outline Design Review
  • Topographical surveys
  • Traffic Surveys & Modelling
  • Consultation with landowners and Land Acquisition
  • Geotechnical Investigation
  • Archaeological Investigation
  • Planning Permission
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Detailed design
  • Utilities and Services diversions
  • Tender process
  • Main Contractor appointment
  • Construction

Pre-Construction Planning

Summer 2022

  • Business Case Development
  • Landowner engagement
  • Outline Design
  • Surveys
  • Ground Investigation
  • Public exhibition
  • Archaeological Investigation

Autumn 2022

  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Planning applications
  • SEPA licence
  • Traffic Orders

Winter 2022

  • Detailed design
  • Biosecurity management plan
  • Road Safety Audit
  • Preparation of Contract
  • Services and Public Utility relocation

Community Wealth Building

The project will contribute to Community Wealth Building and, in particular, will have a significant positive impact on the Council’s ambitions under the following pillars:

Procurement

There is an opportunity for a local supply chain to be created through the project. North Ayrshire Business Development Team will review opportunities for local businesses and provide support where needed.

Fair Employment

Employment opportunities will be created, particularly within the construction sector. North Ayrshire Council's enhanced Community Benefits approach will attempt to ensure local training and work experience opportunities are realised. The B714 upgrade will also provide enhanced connectivity to help those from rural areas access work.

Financial Power

The project will invest in the B714 corridor and attract external national investment into North Ayrshire.

Consultation

The project will involve various rounds of consultation with the public and interested parties, such as business and transport groups, including via the planning process. There will also be consultation and negotiation with landowners around the determination of the route alignment and the acquisition of land.

It is the intention to acquire the necessary land through negotiation with landowners. However, the project has a tight timetable imposed on it by the government and, in order to meet that timetable, the Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) process will be run in parallel with the negotiations. A report will be considered by the Council seeking approval for the CPO process.

To register your interest in the project, please complete the following form:

Dedicated Contact Email

Enquiries regarding the B714 Project can be submitted to B714Upgrade@north-ayrshire.gov.uk

Frequently Asked Questions

A list of frequently asked questions can be viewed below: