Reading Borough Council (RBC)
Again, little of consequence has happened over the last three months.
Cycle Forum and CAST meetings should have taken place in late March or April 2022, but only the CAST meeting was held, with Air Quality being the only agenda item.
A late change or correction to the meeting date gave only a couple of days’ notice, so the attendance was probably low, and we have not received any minutes or report of the meeting.
The Cycle Forum was deferred because of the local elections, but no new date has been received at the time of writing.
Bath Road and Castle Hill Active Travel Scheme
The good news appears to be that Reading Borough Council has now received notification of over £1m in government funding towards the Castle Hill and Bath Road cycle scheme.
This route should run from Berkeley Avenue in the west to over the IDR (Inner Distribution Road) roundabout. This direct route from the west into the town centre could be an extremely useful and well used route.
New Reading Cycle Hub
- Proposed cycle hub at the former Primark unit in central Reading
- Enclosed cycle facility would combine cycle parking and maintenance facilities
- Supported by Primark and run in partnership with Ethical Reading and The Reading Bicycle Kitchen
The proposed town centre hub is designed to provide more secure and enclosed town centre cycle parking facilities for up to approximately 120 bicycles, with both experienced and novice cyclists in mind. There is also the potential for other activities to be run from the hub, including a bicycle loan and/or bicycle donation scheme.
Following extensive research into properties in the town centre, RBC has chosen to locate the hub within a unit at 32-41 West Street, the site of the former Primark store, which is still owned by the company. It will initially run for one year with funding from the Department for Transport (DfT), beyond which the continuation of the scheme will be subject to evaluation and the ability to secure a sustainable venue and further funding.
Reading cycle hub will be staffed and planned to be open 7 days a week, from 7am to 7pm and will open later this year.
Shinfield Road Active Travel Scheme
We have heard there is to be a public consultation on detailed plans for the Shinfield Road cycle route in the next few weeks.
RCC made comments during the initial consultation about safety and useability on parts of the Shinfield Road scheme proposals but are unaware of whether changes have been made in line with our comments, despite our requests.
Unfortunately, we are yet again likely to be put in the position of having to publicly criticise the detailed proposals.
RBC Coordinator for RCC