Yesterday during one of my sessions knocking on doors and listening to views, I was struck by the force and regularity of the view on a single issue – traffic congestion. I just ask people to tell me what is on their mind without prompting. In so many cases people said they thought the traffic jams in the Wokingham area are too great. They recognised the need for additional housing and understood the new building going on, but were keen to say more has to be done to provide capacity for people to get to work, to take their children to school and to go to the shops.
I agree. I was able to report that both the Council and the government agree, and are making more cash available for road improvement. In the Wokingham/Reading area we see major investment underway. On the A 327 to Reading there is the Shinfield by-pass (nearing completion), the new bridge over the M4 (completed), and the planned Arborfield by pass. On the A 329 work is in hand on the Winnersh by pass. In the town of Wokingham the new station link is open. There are plans for the new southern and northern distributor roads to the east of Wokingham, with a planned new bridge over the railway. There is also a proposal to widen the road under the railway bridge on the Finchampstead Road.
I have asked the Council to look again at smaller schemes and traffic management issues. There are criticisms of the phasing of lights at the Station approach from Wellington Road, with red phases when the level crossing gates are already down, and at Winnersh crossroads. There are a number of places where traffic sensitive lights would be better, or where lights could be withdrawn from roundabouts or made part time. There are various junctions where segregation of left and right turning traffic, different phasing of lights, and more carriageway capacity at and near the junction would help. Bracknell has recently upgraded capacity at the Coral Reef junction of the B3430 with the A 322.