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Preparatory work is underway for the construction of a new junction on the A1 near Queen Margaret University (QMU).

The junction will provide critical infrastructure to improve accessibility and connectivity to QMU which, in partnership with East Lothian Council, is delivering an Innovation Hub adjacent to the university – phase one of a wider Edinburgh Innovation Park.

The Innovation Hub (part-funded by £30million from the South East Scotland City Region Deal) will provide a bespoke facility for small-to-medium enterprise, businesses and partners, particularly those within the food and drink sector. Edinburgh Innovation Park will provide an opportunity for businesses to expand beyond the Innovation Hub and provide an exciting and significant cluster of knowledge exchange, innovation and high value business growth in East Lothian.

Following a tender process, the contract for the junction work was awarded to John Paul Construction. East Lothian Council is working with John Paul Construction to deliver the junction by December 2022 with initial works starting this month. Traffic management for the works is expected to be in place by early January 2022.

Discussions are now underway between the contractor, East Lothian Council, QMU, Transport Scotland (TS), BEAR (who maintain the A1 on behalf of TS) and other stakeholders, to finalise a programme of works.

Michaela Sullivan, Head of Development at East Lothian Council, said: “Further detail of the works timetable and what the various phases will involve for road users and local residents will be communicated regularly throughout the process. At all stages, every effort will be made to minimise disruption to road users but some disruption including temporary lane closures, will be inevitable. This junction will greatly improve access to and from the QMU site.”

Steve Scott, Director of Campus Development and Operations at QMU said: “We welcome the news that work is to commence on extending the existing junction. Once completed, it will improve access to the university, from both directions, and will be a major benefit to the growing community around the campus, including the Edinburgh Innovation Park.”

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