Berkshire

Reading's third bridge traffic study gets £250k of funding

Reading Bridge Image copyright Philip Halling
Image caption Reading Bridge is one of two current main crossings over the Thames in Reading

A feasibility study into a third River Thames bridge in the Reading area has been given council backing.

Four councils have pledged £250,000 for a detailed traffic modelling plan to look at traffic on both sides of the proposed bridge in detail.

The idea for a new bridge to ease congestion in Reading town centre has been circulating for about 40 years.

There are three main routes over the Thames in the area, two in Caversham, Reading and one in Sonning, Wokingham.

Wokingham and Reading Borough Councils, along with Oxfordshire County Council and South Oxfordshire District Council have all pledged money for the study.

'Negative impact'

A spokesman for South Oxfordshire District Council said: "We are mindful of the potential negative impact that a scheme such as and additional bridge could have on the road network within South Oxfordshire.

"However we are committed to working with neighbouring authorities to identify solutions which may ease the traffic problems."

Wokingham council leader Keith Baker, said other ideas to ease the traffic congestion including an expanded park-and-ride route were "tinkering at the edges - we need to do something big".

Mr Baker said: "We've had an extensive traffic model for our area but what we didn't have was going across the river into Oxfordshire.

"That hopefully will give us the definitive evidence to start mitigating against some of the issues that Oxfordshire County Council have."

The bridge and any road alterations would cost between £60m and £100m, which would require government funding.

Image copyright Google
Image caption The suggested area for the third bridge is in the A3290 area, and over the river to Caversham

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