Friday, November 30, 2012

A bit more planning - a Council document that will go to the Scottish Government - the dummy talks!

You can read the Highland Council document that our dummy star spoke about here.
Points that struck our regular reader about the document:

1)  It mentions the Nairn bypass, but almost as an afterthought to the main pitch, which is dualling of the whole of the A96 Inverness to Aberdeen.  A96 dualling is a worthy aim, but long term and very expensive.  HC should be pressing for the Nairn bypass ahead of (and if need be independently of) A96 dualling, just as Moray did with the Fochabers bypass.  The risk with the way HC is presenting this is that our bypass will only be taken forward if/when a grand plan for the whole A96 dualling project is agreed. (Our correspondent believes that that will not be in his lifetime)

2)  It refers to improving Inverness airport (Dalcross rail link etc) but with few details - just a cross-reference to the existing 'masterplan'.

3)  It argues for an extension of a Highland Council pet scheme, the A96 Corridor.  Not just Tornagrain and UHI at Beechwood, but now a corridor stretching to Elgin and dedicated to "life sciences".  This doubtless reflects discussion with Moray.  Sensible, up to a point.  But covering the Laich of Moray with business parks and housing will not only put the squeeze on prime agricultural land and the prospects for agro-production (Hardmuir, Garlicky Co etc) - it will also further concentrate resources, people and investment around the Inverness/Inner Moray Firth area while continuing to deprive and deplete the rest of the Highlands.  Developers will love this.  “As a selfish Nairnite maybe I should welcome it too,”.  But as on economic and social geography terms it seems to me stupid and unbalanced regional planning,” said our correspondent.

4)  It bids for superfast broadband.  Yes indeed.  This could do much to stimulate remote-working and attract high-value (in economic terms) but low-impact (in environmental terms) investment, employment and activity to the region.

So there we have it Gurnites – if you have a moment to spare see what you make of it yourself.

1 comment:

Reality Bytes said...

Is there more to this than meets the eye? Suspicious Nairnites will undoubtedly see a conspiracy here. First, the item about Highland Council planning is introduced in the video by Crash-Test Dummy. Is there some hidden meaning in this?

Then our virtual host refers to the esteemed Gurnmeister and his site as "The Gun".... Or was it "The Gin"?
Very worrying indeed.