Residents and workers in North East Fife are being advised to expect travel disruption during early Spring 2016, when major pipe-laying works get underway on the main A919 Guardbridge to St Andrews road.
Fife Council will close the road, from 15 February 2016 to 8 April 2016, to allow 4 miles of water-pipe to be laid, connecting Guardbridge’s new £25 million Green Energy Centre with St Andrews, and providing the essential infrastructure for ongoing inward investment into Fife, job creation, and renewable energy production.
The new Energy Centre is being developed by the University of St Andrews and will pump hot water to St Andrews where it will be used to heat and cool student residences and laboratories.
To ensure safety to road users and to keep disruption to a minimum, diversions will be in place through Balmullo, adding an extra 7.5 miles to journeys north of St Andrews and south of St Michaels.
Detailed consultation will take place with emergency services, bus operators, local businesses and community representatives and wherever possible the University will ensure that arrangements are in place to minimise the impact on services.
The University’s Chief Operating Officer, Derek Watson, said: “We are very sensitive to the fact that these works will cause varying levels of disruption to people who live or work in the Guardbridge, Leuchars and St Andrews areas, and we are very grateful for the support and consideration which the community has shown so far as we have developed our plans to establish Guardbridge as a major centre for renewable energy.
“The Guardbridge development represents an investment of £25 million in north east Fife – creating more than 225 jobs in the construction phase alone, supporting apprenticeships, promoting the environment, and re-establishing Guardbridge as a key economic centre.”
Initially, the University had been directed by the Fife roads authorities to undertake the pipe-laying works in October and November this year. Following consultation with councillors however, it became apparent that the road closure might impact on commuting Madras pupils due to sit prelim exams in November.
The University lobbied for permission to undertake the works in January and February 2016 at the quietest time of year for traffic, but has now been informed that the road closures cannot start until February 2016.