Approval has been granted for plans to upgrade the road connections between Motherwell and Ravenscraig, including a new signalised roundabout at Airbles Road/Windmillhill Street and a dual carriageway to the Ravenscraig Regional Sports Facility.
The new road will run from the roundabout, east through the Orbiston Street industrial area before passing under the West Coast Main Line railway and on to the Ravenscraig site.
Paths for pedestrians and cyclists will be created on both sides of the new road, with crossing points at key locations.
This is the first part of the £127.2 million Ravenscraig Access Infrastructure (RAI) project, which is being funded by the council and Glasgow City Region City Deal. In addition to creating new connections to Motherwell, the wider RAI project will improve connections from Ravenscraig north to the M8 and south to the M74 and is part of plans to regenerate the former steelworks site.
“This is a key milestone for our ambitious plans for the regeneration of the former steelworks site, with permissions now in place to create the new connection from the site south to Motherwell, and north to the M8 and to the rest of Scotland,” said Councillor Paul Kelly, Council Depute Leader.
“By improving access to and from the site, we are opening up more opportunities for investment in business, retail, housing and leisure. The new road and active travel links will create many construction and associated jobs over the next couple of years but, more importantly, it is the starting point for Ravenscraig to have a new future where people can live, learn, work, invest and visit.”
UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart said: "Improving infrastructure is essential to unlocking regional growth and regeneration, and will remain just as important as we transition to Net-Zero.
"The UK Government is investing half a billion pounds in local infrastructure projects through the Glasgow City Region Deal, helping communities to build back better from the pandemic."
Scottish Government Finance and Economy Secretary Kate Forbes said: “I am very pleased that approval has been granted to upgrade the road connections between Motherwell and Ravenscraig. The Ravenscraig site is one of great importance and it is fantastic to see it being transformed from the derelict land that it had become following the closure of the Steelworks to this thriving new community.
“The Scottish Government is contributing £500 million over 20 years to the Glasgow City Region City Deal, supporting the region’s economic recovery by creating jobs, and providing the commercial infrastructure to support and attract businesses to Glasgow and the surrounding areas.”
“The approval of these access improvements unlocks another key stage for Ravenscraig’s and Scotland’s economic recovery,” said Nick Davies, director of Ravenscraig Ltd. “We have two thirds of Scotland’s population within 90 minutes’ drive of the site, with the forthcoming City Deal project set to reduce journey times further. Combined with its excellent public and active travel infrastructure, we are confident Ravenscraig is solidifying its position as the perfect place for people and businesses to locate in North Lanarkshire and the Central Belt.”
The plans were granted planning permission at a meeting of the council’s Planning Committee on 16 September.