GRINDING TO A HALT

Chapel Level roadworks dragging on. Councillor David Ross (left) with Pat Callaghan, roads spokesman and Dr Bob McLellan head of transportation with Fife Council
Chapel Level roadworks dragging on. Councillor David Ross (left) with Pat Callaghan, roads spokesman and Dr Bob McLellan head of transportation with Fife Council
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motorists in Kirkcaldy are experiencing major hold-ups at roadworks around the town.

And, as well as tailbacks and long waits at traffic lights, problems are being made worse by an absence of road signs ... and work taking much longer than scheduled.

Residents in Sandford Park and Capshard Estates have endured weeks of detours of around a mile in the wrong direction to head west from their homes, only to be told they face potentially many weeks more inconvenience.

And gridlocked Kirkcaldy has seen lengthy queues of traffic heading from the Esplanade onto The Path as resurfacing work and pothole filling is carried out around the harbour area.

Market deadline

This work is scheduled to be completed before the Links Market rolls into town on April 13.

Similar traffic jams are being experienced on Bennochy Road as traffic comes to a standstill at peak times with three way traffic lights causing tailbacks to the traffic lights at Bennochy Bridge and the mini roundabout at the top of the road.

Fife Council said the work to renew mains pipes is being done by Scottish Gas as part of a rolling programme which will move up Hendry Road and finish by April 3.

A spokesman for Fife Council’s transportation section said all the roadworks were part of “essential maintenance” programmes.

“They are co-ordinated through transportation and we do our best to try to minimise disruption to the travelling public,” he explained.

The delays on the Chapel Level roadworks where the road is being made dual carriageway to cater for the increased hospital traffic, have been described as “completely unacceptable” by local councillor David Ross.

He said exits from Capshard and Sandford Park estates had been restricted to left turn only since the middle of January, adding almost a mile to the journey in or out of the estates.

Unacceptable

The Labour councillor for Kirkcaldy North said: “This delay is completely unacceptable.

‘‘I was told it would be four to six weeks and this is what I have been telling residents.

‘‘We now find out that it could be three to four months before this part of the work is completed.

“Local residents were prepared to put up with inconvenience for a few weeks given the prospect of long-term improvements, but this now looks like dragging on for three to four months which should have been avoidable.

“Transportation have apologised for the delays and for the breakdown in communications to residents and local councillors, but it’s action to address the problem that’s needed.

“Pat Callaghan our roads spokesman and I had a site visit with Dr Bob McLellan, head of transportation for the Council on Tuesday this week, and he has promised to look at what can be done to speed up the lifting of these restrictions.

‘‘I know there are safety concerns about this, but I very much hope something can be done to get this situation sorted out.”