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Anger over scrapping of £400m Glasgow Airport Rail Link

Glasgow City Council has accused the Scottish government of a “clear anti-Glasgow agenda” after the £400 million Glasgow Airport Rail Link project was axed by finance secretary John Swinney.

Council chief Steven Purcell described the decision to abandon the scheme as a “dagger in the heart of Glasgow”.

He said: “The Glasgow Airport Rail Link is a vital piece of the infrastructure needed for the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the continued economic growth of the west of Scotland. The SNP has today taken that from us and offered us part funding for a bus lane. That is the worst deal in modern history.”

The plans for the link had helped secure the 2014 Commonwealth Games for the city. The project was to link Glasgow Central station to the airport via Paisley.

The project was the biggest victim of Scottish government’s cuts for 2010, with claims that dumping the scheme could save about £170 million over three years.

Mr Swinney, who yesterday announced about £500 million of cutbacks in the budget, said: “This is the first real-terms cut in the Scottish Budget since devolution.”

He said he took the decision to scrap the link “reluctantly”.