Conservative-led Wokingham Borough Council has a strong track record of securing funding for transport infrastructure delivery, both through central government funding and the private sector; as such, there has been significant investment in the transport network over the last five to ten years with more infrastructure following at pace. In addition, significant investment has gone into Wokingham’s transport options, helping to manage the overall demand for highway travel within the Borough. Road safety performance in the Borough is generally good.
Wokingham borough's key transport issues are:
- relatively high car ownership and usage of private vehicles at peak travel times leading to congestion hotspots
- insufficient road capacity at key locations on the local highway network
- limited opportunity for tactical diversion during incidents due to a lack of alternative routes.
- existing technology-controlled junctions operating in relative isolation without a connected technology approach to enable smoother traffic flows.
- development and its associated impacts
- a poor pedestrian experience including unsympathetic crossings at key locations and narrow footways in older town centres.
- climate change
- increasing unpredictable weather conditions/events - notably flooding.
- Understanding likely future developments in transport also offers opportunities to mitigate some of the problems identified above. These are likely to involve: connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV), increased uptake of electric vehicles (EV), growth of car clubs and the sharing economy, reduced car ownership of younger drivers and increased homeworking, extended and integrated sensor network and shared data.
So what are we doing….
- Improving traffic flows through integrated traffic sensors and traffic signal optimisation, improving driver information provided both for driving and parking both through VMS signs and providing open source data eg to google maps, bus prioritisation and real time passenger information.
- Providing control centre technology to enable highways to detect issues such as highway obstructions and manipulate traffic signs and priorities to mitigate problems.
- Technology and engineering which supports public transport (bus priority) and active travel (cycling) will generate further opportunities for modal shift for Wokingham residents
- Implementing drainage sensors to monitor water height in gulleys and provide flood warnings, reducing flooding through blocked gulleys.
- Improved public EV charging across the borough
- Increased cycleway provision, completing missing links and improvements to current infrastructure through the LCWIP process
- Smart traffic lights 78% complete with 37 sites installed across the Borough, we have also obtained some DfT funding to pay for these.