Transport Interchange report withdrawn before council discussion

A report into the business plan of the £5.2million Galashiels Transport Interchange was withdrawn last week before it could be discussed by Scottish Borders Council.

The local authority has invested £3.8million in the new building which is due to open in June and will be run by the council.

The facility has already courted controversy by not having any bridge or tunnel link with the platform of the new Galashiels train station on the other side of what will become the main arterial road through the town at Ladhope Vale.

The withdrawn report, from project manager Euan Doyle, had sought agreement from councillors to subsidise each bus departure to the tune of 93p.

Based on the business plan for the building, the report estimated that the departure charge levied on bus operators should be £2.68, excluding VAT, compared to the 35p charged for each journey out of the town’s old bus station.

Mr Doyle said that without the subsidy which would reduce the charge to £1.75, there was a risk bus operators would boycott the facility.

A separate report from Mr Doyle, containing confidential details of staffing costs and the commercial leasing of the building, was also withdrawn from the council’s private agenda.

“The report was withdrawn as officers were in a position to complete further work before a decision would finally be required,” said a spokesperson for SBC.