Councillors will consider plans to develop a business case for vital improvements to the A77 with no tangible moves by Transport Scotland on the horizon.

South Ayrshire Council’s cabinet will decide whether to launch an assessment of the much criticised road and how it impacts the needs of locals and businesses, using the Scottish Transport Appraisal Guidance (STAG) model.

It follows the recommendations in Transport Scotland’s second Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR2) for improving the A77.

STPR2 recommends that ‘safety, resilience and reliability improvements are made on the A75 and A77 strategic road corridors, in turn supporting placemaking opportunities’.

A report states: “This would include, but is not limited to, improving junctions, enhancing overtaking opportunities at appropriate locations and widening or realigning carriageways.”

While the recommendations were highlighted, the report points out that Transport Scotland has not backed this up with a specific programme or funding.

More ambitious options were published as part of the ‘national case for change’ during the review.

This includes the full dualling of the A77 between Ayr and Stranraer and a motorway from Glasgow to Stranraer, but these were not pursued, having been "sifted out".

Now SAC are looking at taking matters into their own hands, possibly alongside Dumfries and Galloway Council, which is home to the similarly problematic A75.

A report to South Ayrshire Council’s cabinet states: “The Ayrshire Roads Alliance, in partnership with Dumfries and Galloway Council and Mid and East Antrim Council, produced a Strategic and Economic Impact Assessment report (S&EIA) for both the A75 and A77 corridors.

"The outcomes from this report detailed the economic benefits to significant investment in both the A75 and A77.

“In the period since the publication of both the STPR2, the UK Government has committed significant funding to Dumfries and Galloway Council to progress upgrades to the A75.

"Despite this, Dumfries and Galloway Council remains committed to working in partnership with SAC to secure investment in both the A75 and the A77.

“To take this work forward the partnership should be continued and a STAG specific to the A75 and A77 be carried out.

"This STAG will combine the previous work carried out by STPR2 and the S&EIA and develop these further to provide evidence based priority outcomes to improve both the A75 and A77 from a transport perspective.

“Once complete the STAG and S&EIA will form the base data for an outline business case (OBC) and subsequent full business case (FBC).”

The report will be discussed by the cabinet on Tuesday, April 23.