Plans are being drawn up to make it easier to cycle and walk between Woodley town centre and the Reading borough boundary at Palmer Park.
Wokingham Borough Council will be progressing with its Active Travel Fund proposals for the area following public engagement on plans for Woodley, Earley and Wokingham earlier this year. More than 600 responses were received on three proposed routes, with several options looked at for each area.
Respondents indicated that the Woodley/Reading route will have the most significant impact on reducing car dependency and increasing bike use. The first section of the route, between Woodley town centre and Bulmershe Leisure Centre, will be progressed as the first phase with the aim to complete construction by Spring 2022.
In total, the new route will cost almost £4 million and the first stage will be funded by the Department for Transport’s Active Travel Fund. The council will look for funding to provide the rest of the route in the years ahead. Further consultation with residents on detailed plans for the Woodley to Reading route will come forward later this year.
“Feedback from our residents tells us they want to see segregated cycleways and these would lead to more of them feeling safe to travel around their area on their bikes,” said Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, executive member for highways and transport. “We’re hoping to bring that to Woodley over the next year, with the first section of the Woodley to Reading route between Woodley town centre and Bulmershe Leisure Centre. We’re already looking at how to get funding in place to complete the rest of the route.”
The council continues to invest in infrastructure across its road network to make it easier for residents to walk and cycle across the borough. This includes our growing greenways network and investment in cycle paths in other areas as better facilities will help cut the number of car journeys within the borough. It’s part of the council’s wider climate emergency agenda, with a goal to make Wokingham Borough carbon neutral by 2030.
The other proposed routes will be progressed subject to further consultation and when funds allow. The full engagement summary from the initial consultation will be available to read on the MyJourney Wokingham website and as part of the an individual executive member decision will be made on the proposals on 8 July.