Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Search launched for new Forth Crossing name

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Media captionConstruction of the new Forth Replacement Crossing is due to be completed in 2016

The search for a name for the new Forth Replacement Crossing has been officially launched.

Members of the public are being asked to choose a name for the bridge, which is Scotland's largest infrastructure project in a generation.

A panel of civic, business and community representatives will consider all entries, and then shortlist names for a final public vote next year.

Construction of the bridge began last year and is due to finish in 2016.

A completion date for the new crossing was brought forward in the wake of concerns about the condition of the Forth Road Bridge, which is now more than 40 years old.

The bridge will incorporate state-of-the-art wind-shielding to ensure it remains open during the sort of extreme high winds that shut the Forth Road Bridge earlier in December, meaning fewer diversions and less disruption for motorists.

The work, which is being paid from the Scottish government's capital budget, is expected to support more than 1,200 new jobs during construction and protect up to 3,000 posts.

The bridge itself is costing £790m, while the the Forth crossing project - including motorway upgrades - is to cost between £1.45bn and £1.6bn.

Image caption A panel will choose a shortlist from the names suggested by the public

Transport Minister Keith Brown said: "The Forth Replacement Crossing, as it is currently known, is an exciting, iconic and economically vital project that we want the people of Scotland to take pride in.

"We fully recognise that finding the appropriate name for the new bridge is a matter of considerable interest both locally and nationally.

"It is absolutely right then that the people of Scotland have the final say on the identity of this historic project."

Jan Short, of North Queensferry Community Council, said: "The building of this bridge is an historic event in the life of a village which is already steeped in history.

"The new bridge is very significant to the village of North Queensferry in many ways and it is important that we are represented on the bridge naming advisory panel."

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