The Road Network

The area covered by the five local authorities who are members of HITRANS contains 8,733 miles of road. This is around one quarter of the Scottish road network. There are no motorways in the area. Some 810 miles are trunk roads. The other 7,923 miles are the responsibility of the local authorities.

The strategic road network connects the area's regional centres with national gateways. The strategic road network includes links such as the A9, A82 and A96.  The regional road network links local centres and regional centres within the HITRANS area. It includes roads such as the A830 and A816.

Roads are the mainstay of our area's transport network. This reflects:

  • Relatively high car ownership, emphasising the importance road travel.
  • Use of the road network by bus services and taxis, as well as for cycling and walking.
  • In some of our more remote communities, a single road can be their only means of access.
  • There is a general aim to increase the amount of freight travelling by more sustainable forms of transport but road remains the dominant mode for freight traffic.


The main issues facing our road network include:

  • The need for continuing investment to provide roads of a modern standard that offer safe, reliable travel with suitable overtaking opportunities.
  • Ensuring that road network is as safe as possible.
  • The need for routing of through traffic away from town and city central areas.
  • The pressure placed on the network during the tourist season. On some roads daily vehicle flows in the summer are more than twice those in the winter.
  • The cost of fuel.