Why is it that the “Oil Capital of Europe” has yet again today found itself at a standstill because of one accident on one road? how can it be that this mighty and powerful beast has such a pathetic Achilles’ Heel as this? While I wish a speedy recovery to the injured man from this morning’s crash I can’t help but think that once again we are living in a city that thinks it’s one thing but is actually another.
We talk a good game in the North East and I love the area, it’s my home and I always will, but our jumped ideas of brilliance are very quickly squashed when two cars have a crash on one of the many roads into the city. There are many who will point out that the new Western Peripheral Route, that is due to be built at the same time Satan makes a snowman, will solve these kinds of issue. I say “you’re wrong.” The accident happened on the Ellon Road which would not really be effected by the bypass as it is one of the main conduits to the city centre. Where the bypass or the proposed improvements to the Haudagain Roundabout (a strange and mystical place that has been compared to the River Styx due to the likelihood of getting across unscathed) will help is in taking traffic out of the city when trying to cross it.
This morning I left the house at my usual time of 7.40am to get the Park and Ride bus that leaves the AECC at 7.52am. Within a few minutes the queues were backing up and almost meeting by the Bridge of Don branch of Asda from both exits. I thought I’d be clever and skirt around the Parkway by taking the back road behind the Scrappy only to find the queues were as bad that way. How is it possible that the entire area of the Bridge of Don is brought to a halt by one accident?
“We need a third crossing!” goes the cry from the campaigners to put another bridge over the River Don. They’ve completely missed the point – we’re well beyond a third, we need a fourth and fifth to start changing the madness seen this morning. Look at a city like Glasgow or Newcastle or Manchester or London where there are numerous bridges crossing the main rivers not just a couple. This just shows how backward thinking we are here to set our sights so low. We need one across to Bucksburn, one to Stoneywood and one to Grandholm for starters. Then there’s the south of the city where everyone coming north has to squeeze across two bridges at Garthdee.
It’s easy to point the finger at successive local councils for wasting money – so let’s do it. There is so much potential in this corner of Scotland but between the local dipsticks and the pathetic specimens in Holyrood no-one has bothered to do anything about anything for nearly thirty years. the original plans for the famous WPR was supposed to be finished two years ago and they’ve still not sorted out the money for it yet.
So where does that leave us? Still stuck in a traffic queue with no sight of the end anywhere close. We’re all sitting behind people who have crashed the finances of an “oil rich” city and we can’t get past them. No diversions in place either. We’ll just sit and wait. Again.