First sections of cycling and walking improvements on Shinfield Road nearing completion
- First sections of the cycle lane from Chancellor’s Way junction to Pepper Lane nearing completion
- Scheme on track to be completed by the end of the summer
READING COUNCIL’S plans to improve cycling and walking along the Shinfield Road are progressing well, with the first sections of the cycle lane from Chancellor’s Way junction to Pepper Lane nearing completion.
The works, which started in early October 2022, will deliver a new cycle route along Shinfield Road – between Christchurch Green and Shinfield Rise and will link south Reading and the Royal Berkshire Hospital, the University of Reading, local centres and Reading Town Centre. It links with existing new cycle routes delivered by the Council on Redlands Road and Christchurch Road in the first stage of its Active Travel programme.
The improvements also include the provision of no waiting restrictions (double yellow lines) on Shinfield Road along the route, which should address the parking issues being experienced particularly near the University. New advanced stop lines and early release for cyclists will be provided to improve safety. A number of new and improved crossings for pedestrians are also a key element of the scheme.
In order to minimise disruption and improve the delivery of the scheme, it is being constructed in sections with the first from Christchurch Green – Pepper Lane now almost complete. Following the full completion of this section later in March, work will continue from Pepper Lane to Cressingham Road, followed by Cressingham Road down to Shinfield Rise at the edge of the borough. It is anticipated that the scheme will be completed by the end of the summer with many sections open for use sooner.
During the works, pedestrian routes are being maintained at all times, either via a diversion of the existing pathway around the construction works or with crossings to an alternative footpath on the other side of the highway.
The Council is working closely with residents and local businesses to minimise any disruption. For information on the scheme visit the Council’s website at: www.reading.gov.uk/ATF2ShinfieldRd or for specific questions or requirements by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Councillor Tony Page, Reading Borough Council’s Lead Councillor for Climate Strategy and Transport said: “I’m pleased at the progress we’ve made so far on our work to introduce a fully segregated new cycle lane along the Shinfield Road. The segregated cycle lane links to key centres of employment in Reading, such as the Royal Berkshire Hospital, The University and, of course, the Town Centre itself.
“As part of our wider Climate Emergency Strategy, this work underlines the Council’s wholehearted commitment to tackling poor air quality which we know exists in parts of Reading. It has never been more important to create realistic alternatives to the private car, not only in terms of tackling congestion and air quality but also for the residents and local communities who live on key routes.
“The work on the Shinfield Road precedes our now approved plans to implement further cycling and walking improvements stretching from Berkeley Avenue along the Bath Road to Castle Hill, then running over the IDR to Castle Street, as well as our recent decision to make permanent the fully segregated cycle lane along Sidmouth Street.
"We have achieved significant improvements in other areas, including the routes on Redlands Road and Christchurch Road, delivered as part of the first phase of funding. We have also just submitted our bid for Tranche 4 funding to the Department for Transport – and we should find out if we’ve been successful by the end of March. This funding would then enable us to make improvements at the junction of Sidmouth Street and Queens Road to provide safer cycle links through to Kennet Side.”
Increasing Active Travel remains a top priority for the Council. As well as the work on the Shinfield Road, work will start in the summer on cycling and walking improvements in the Bath Road/Castle Hill area of Reading. The Council has already achieved significant improvements in other areas, including the routes on Redlands Road and Christchurch Road, and Sidmouth Street delivered as part of Tranche 1 funding.
In February, the Council submitted its bid for the full indicative allocation of £588k of Active Travel Fund Tranche 4 funding from the Department for Transport. If successful, this would allow us to bring forward scheme a scheme at Sidmouth Steet to better link pedestrian and cycle facilities across the IDR junction.
The Council is also working towards the creation of a bike hub in the centre of the town and continues to invest in free cycle courses for residents, and in supporting the creation of School Streets. People can now plan a walk or cycle in Reading also using the Council’s Reading cycle and walking routes interactive map: https://my.reading.gov.uk/custom/cycle_network_solo.html
The Council has also made printed maps for Reading’s walking and cycling routes available to download for print at home or available from local library branches: