Old A1 speed to be reduced

Wednesday March 6th 2024


The A199, is the former A1 road in East Lothian, and faces new speed restrictions.

Written by Local Democracy Reporter, Marie Sharp

Plans to reduce the speed limit on the former A1 in East Lothian to allow a new cycle path to be built without having to buy additional land are set to get the go ahead next week.

East Lothian Council wants to reduce the national speed limit on the A199 between Haddington and Dunbar to 40mph as part of plans to create an active travel pathway alongside the road.

The road is the former A1 and has been used in recent times as an alternative for all traffic when high winds close the current A1 between the two towns.

A report which will go before the council’s Labour Administration cabinet next week says the new pathway will be part of an active freeway which will provide a “high-quality commuter cycling and walking link connecting Dunbar-East Linton-Haddington-Gladsmuir-MacmerryTranent-Musselburgh along the route of A199”.

The report says a public consultation on the proposed reduced speed on the road between Haddington and Dunbar was held over four weeks late last year and receive 117 responses with 63% supporting the plan.

And they said in response to one objector who said they could retain the current speed and widen the paths proposed to make them safe: “This would require third party land which would delay implementation or make it

Cabinet members will be asked to approve the initiation of statutory procedures to make Traffic Regulation Orders to implement a 40mph speed limit between settlements along the A199 to enable construction of the first
phases of the active freeway during 2024.

And they will be told that action must be taken quickly to avoid losing funding opportunities for the planned pathways.

The report warns elected members: “There is a short window of opportunity to attract significant funding during FY (the financial year) 2024-25 to begin construction of the section of the active freeway within East Linton (known as Phase 2A), and the stretch from Haddington to Tranent (Phase 5), but this is dependent on the new speed limits being agreed.”

Following a spate of incidents when high sided lorries were blown over on a bridge on the A1 between Haddington and Dunbar, the A199 has provided a diversion for traffic during high winds to avoid further incidents.

No mention of whether this will continue to be the case following the introduction of the new pathway is included in the report which will be presented to cabinet on Tuesday, March 12.

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