The plans for the new £14m facility will see the construction of a two-platform station on the Aberdeen-Inverness line with step-free access, via a footbridge with lifts, on the site adjacent to Inverness airport.
The station will have 64 car parking spaces with 10 electric charging facilities, four disabled spaces and cycle parking. There will be a new access road to the station for motorists and access to both platforms for pedestrians and cyclists.
Hitrans has significantly upgraded the existing active travel path between the new station and the airport terminal and two buses an hour will initially link the station and the airport.
Work from now until the end of December will see the creation of embankments, and the start of construction work on the new platforms, including the concrete lift shafts and footbridge foundations.
The development also comes with the advantage of closing the level crossing at Petty which will improve the safety of the line and the operation of the new station, which is due for completion in December 2022.
Graeme Dey, Minister for Transport, said: “It is great to see work getting underway on what will be an exciting development both for Inverness Airport and for the surrounding communities.
“The start of work on-site is a significant step towards delivery of this sustainable travel interchange, which has been made possible by a £14 million Scottish Government investment as part of our commitment to a fairer, greener Scotland.
“By making Inverness Airport more accessible for passengers and staff alike, we can deliver improved travel links to the growing Inverness Airport Business Park and the new town of Tornagrain. This is particularly important as we continue to pursue a green recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Alex Hynes, managing director of Scotland’s Railway, said: “Scotland’s Railway has a great record of opening new stations and new lines, which help to drive further investment in communities and create new opportunities for local people.
“The construction of the new Inverness Airport station will help enhance the area by giving travellers another route to the airport and will open-up transport links and improve connectivity.
“We are committed to working alongside the Scottish Government to open up our railway to as many communities as possible across Scotland and look forward to welcoming this new station onto the network.
“This is an exciting project that has the potential to transform travel options to the airport - and getting on-site to start the build is a significant milestone in the progression of the project. We will work with our partners to deliver this new station as quickly as possible for our customers and the wider community.”
Councillor Trish Robertson, Highland Councils Strategic Chair, said: “The Council has provided over £100K towards the cost of this project, which will deliver significant benefits to the Inverness community, improving access to the airport and making the area more attractive for inward investment and housing growth, which will both support local communities and the economy.
“I look forward to seeing the works progress rapidly.”