A BOLLARD that left motorists with repair bills totalling thousands of pounds has been replaced by a more flexible version.
As The Inverness Courier reported in October, the original metal structure, at the junction of Grant Street and Nelson Street, Merkinch, was nicknamed "The Million Pound Bollard" due to the amount of damage it had caused.
It kept traffic clear of the corner and protected pedestrians, but was continually being struck by cars and HGVs turning left into Grant Street.
Now Highland Council has installed a slimmer plastic one, provided free by APT Security Systems, in a bid to curb the number of bumps and scrapes at the junction.
"It has the appearance of a traditional solid bollard but should be safer," said a council spokeswoman.
"For example if struck it should yield, causing less vehicle damage, but then it will recover. This type of bollard maintains pedestrian safety and provides a physical barrier, but a vehicle driving into it should not cause disproportionate damage."
It sits outside Rev Richard Burkitt’s charity shop For the Right Reasons. He said the new bollard had made a difference.
"It’s now gone from being the million-pound bollard to the thousand-pound bollard," he said. "So instead from causing a £1000-worth of damage it might cost one vehicle about £20.
"It’s very nice to have a bendy bollard but we’d rather have our safety assured by the widening of the junction.
"I know there’s plans afoot and the council knows what they need to do, but it would be worth spending the money on."
The bollard was originally installed after several lorries travelling down Nelson Street hit buildings while negotiating the corner.
Plans are in the pipeline to realign the junction at a cost of £30,000 — and remove the bollard.