Following public consultation about the preferred route of the North Wokingham Distributor Road (NWDR) the
Borough Council announced in 2014 that it would proceed with a technical study towards delivery of Route B,
favoured by 78% of respondents, which would entail a new road at the western end.
However, the technical report stated that the proposed route would: - increase the flood risk to residential and commercial properties in the Toutley area; - pose chemical hazards in the vicinity of the scrap yard in that area; - and disturb both the Millennium Arboretum and the nearby allotments while offering no suitable alternative.
It was agreed by the Council Executive in October 2015 to accept an alternative route for that section of the NWDR so that it would now pass through the Matthewsgreen Farm development.
Local residents were dismayed by this outcome, given the understanding they had previously that Route B was deliverable.
The revised scheme also provided for widening Bell Foundry Lane, softening the bend at its eastern end and adding a parallel footpath and cycle way within the section adjacent to Cantley Recreation Ground.
The Borough Council has issued the following summary of progress:
West of Old Forest Road– links the A329 Reading Road to the Toutley Road section of the NWDR. The planning application for this section was approved in May 2019 and construction is due to be begin in the Spring of 2020.
Toutley Road–detailed design work is all but complete. Construction is due to begin in the Spring of 2020 with plans for it to be open to traffic by Spring 2021.
Matthewsgreen Farm (Queen’s Road) - This section which runs between the roundabout on Twyford Road and Toutley Road, through Matthewsgreen Farm, has been delivered by the developer and is open to the public.
Bell Foundry Lane– improvements have been carried out to this section with the road being widened and a footway/cycleway constructed.
Ashridge Farm– this section will connect Bell Foundry Lane with the Kentwood Farm section which is being constructed by Crest Nicholson. The planning application for this section was approved in March 2019 with construction planned to start in Autumn 2020.
Kentwood Farm - the developer for Kentwood Farm is Crest Nicholson. The east section, named Diamond Jubilee Way, runs between the roundabout on Warren House Road and Pebblestone Cottage (now demolished) and has largely been delivered by the developer. The west section runs between the roundabout on Warren House Road and Ashridge Farm and is still under construction by Crest Nicholson.
Keephatch Beech (Oak Avenue)– This section runs from Diamond Jubilee Way to the A329 London Road is being delivered by the developer Bellway Homes.