In April 2023, the multimodal study examining travel options for the Aberdeen-Laurencekirk corridor published their results. We are happy to report that the study recorded a strong response in favour of rail options at Cove Bay and Newtonhill. Thank you all who helped make that happen by heeding our call and responding to the public consultation last year.
The attached image shows some encouraging highlights from the results. 69% of respondents indicated that there are train journeys they would like to make but are currently unable to do so, these included destinations such as Aberdeen, Stonehaven and further afield. 60% of respondents indicted that they are dissatisfied with the location of their nearest train station. 75% indicated that the reason they can't make journeys by rail is the lack of an available station. A stunning 95% of Cove residents, and 90% of Newtonhill residents that responded indicated that a station in their town would be an intervention they would like to see. Further, the study also highlighted that there is considerable appetite and indeed potential for rail in the North East, and hat political will is high for stations in Cove and Newtonhill. The study recommends that the Local Rail Development Fund study is advanced to the next stage, that being preliminary and detailed options analyses.
The study also identified parking at Stonehaven, and the availability of travel options at Cove and Newtonhill as key problems.
This is excellent. However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows. Bear in mind this is a multimodal study, and a lot of alternative options were discussed, including;
- Better bus links to Portlethen
- A new park and ride site south of Aberdeen
- Inclusion of Cove and Newtonhill as stops on ART
CNER assert that neither of these can serve as suitable alternatives to stations at Cove and Newtonhill. We will need your help again as the study progresses through the final two stages. Unfortunately, we are likely looking at another year of work by AECOM before the final conclusion of all stages of this study.
We will be keeping up the pressure.