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M8 motorway
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M8 motorway

The M8 is a motorway in Scotland. It runs west from Edinburgh, connecting Livingston, Airdrie, Coatbridge, Glasgow and Paisley, finishing 13 km (8 miles) west of Greenock, on the south bank of the River Clyde. The M8 was largely completed by 1970. Together with the as-yet unbuilt extension to the M74, the M8 forms two sides of an uncompleted ring road around Glasgow city centre.

Nicknamed "The Kamikaze" by Glaswegians, and regarded as one of the worst designed motorways in the UK, rivalled only by London's infamous M25, the Central Glasgow section of the M8 is notorious for bottlenecks and delays between the M8's eastern and western sections. This is largely due to the closely spaced junctions, and the fact that both the M73 and M80 from the south and north east dump all their traffic onto a 5-lane stretch that in the space of a 3 km (2 miles) reduces to only 2 lanes as the M8 blasts a path through the city centre.

The northern extension to the M74 should alleviate some of the congestion problems, but this is not planned to be completed until 2008.

To cross the River Clyde at Glasgow city centre, the M8 incorporates the Kingston Bridge, the busiest motorway river crossing in Europe.

The M8 closely parallels, and in part replaces, the A8 road. The M8 is broken at one point, at the eastern edge of Glasgow between Baillieston and Newhouse, where it reverts to the being the A8 for 10 km (6 miles) before becoming a motorway again near Shotts. An upgrade programme instigated in late 2002 improved the quality of this section of road greatly, but it remained an A-classified dual carriageway, and the long overdue task of upgrading this section to motorway standard has been a thorny issue for the Scottish Executive, who continue to procrastinate over making a decision.


See also: List of motorways in the United Kingdom

Key M8 milestones

See also

External links