The Transport Minister, Baroness Vere has revealed the allocation of £24M worth of funding to the construction of the new Arborfield Cross Relief Road in Wokingham during an announcement on Friday 2nd August 2019.
According to the minister, the 2.3km relief road will divert traffic away from rural lanes around villages and will provide options to take more environmentally friendly forms of transport, while also freeing up more land to be used for housing.
Linking the A327 Reading Road with the A327 Eversley Road, the new development will provide relief for local communities and villages while also encouraging greener modes of transport through the inclusion of a three metre wide shared use pathway for use by cyclists, pedestrians, and also horse riders.
Baroness Vere stated: “Roads are part of the fabric of everyday life, stimulating local economies and helping bring communities together.
“This vital £24 million scheme will provide a new route for cyclists, drivers and pedestrians, helping reduce traffic through local routes and making towns a nicer place to live.”
The announcement to construct the relief road comes as part of a procession of investments that the Department for Transport has made into ensuring that British road and highways are suitable for predicted increases in motorists, with the department having spent over £6.6M between 2015 and 2021.
Such investment is imperative as it is predicted that, by 2026, rush hour through Arborfield Cross, without a relief road, will measure an astounding 3,200 vehicles per hour, risking worsening congestion, queues, and delays in local villages as frustrated drivers will take to countryside routes in an attempt to avoid the aforesaid traffic.
The Leader of Wokingham Borough Council, John Halsall added: “This is exceptional news for the borough, reducing congestion is a principal objective for us at Wokingham and we welcome this funding to assist in the delivery of the identified infrastructure.”
And finally, the relief road is expected to boost employment by unlocking a major housing development that will lead to the construction of 3,500 new homes at Arborfield Garrison.
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