With the forthcoming development of Elms field as both residential and commercial properties, what plans are in place to mitigate the significantly increased environmental impact of the removal of the mature trees that previously would have absorbed the increased air bourn pollution from the additional traffic, particularly as the current traffic loads constantly cause long stationary queues of polluting traffic on the nearly roads?
With the forthcoming development of Elms Field as both residential and commercial properties, what plans are in place to mitigate the significantly increased environmental impact of the removal of the mature trees that previously would have absorbed the increased airborne pollution from the additional traffic, particularly as the current traffic loads constantly cause long stationary queues of polluting traffic on the nearby roads?
Whilst trees are being removed from the site at Elms Field about 100 new semi-mature trees are being planted as part of the development. These trees have been selected to improve bio-diversity and sustainability on the site and will also help mitigate pollution.
Other sustainability investment in the development includes designing buildings to achieve BREEAM Very Good status for commercial properties, inclusion of water fountains to refill water bottles and working with the Town Council to install split recycling bins within the park.
The Elms Field development also includes a new through road from Wellington Road to Shute End which will help address congestion and offer alternative routes within the town, working as part of a large number of highways improvements across the Borough to improve journeys.
Capturing more car parking on the edges of the town, as well as improving the town centre offer to reduce the need for residents to commute elsewhere, should also help reduce congestion. Having a great town centre on their doorstep means people will be able to walk to the town or cycle and take advantage of the increased cycle parking across the centre.
Living in Lower Earley, walking into the town centre is
difficult. Looking forwards what plans
do you have generally to cut traffic pollution throughout the
Borough, due to increased traffic, due to increased
There are a number of highways improvements; bypasses which will help the flow of traffic. We are also investing a substantial amount in cycleways. As you know from Lower Earley there is a good cycleway in Lower Earley, cycleways coming down into Wokingham town centre. We have also recently just opened a greenway so that people can walk or cycle between Finchampstead and the new development at Arborfield Green. As phase 2 of that greenway is underway in that area some of those developments will now be suitable for horse riding. There will be a leisure element as well as people getting places. So the greenway will allow people to go to the Bohunt School for example. So we are investing in a mix of ways of getting people around. Thankfully a lot of people use trains. As you see in Wokingham Station, the car park has been increased, more people using trains. Again in Lower Earley, Winnersh, Winnersh Triangle, the car park there is well used, so again offering alternatives to people taking cars to places. There are Park and Rides as well being installed. There are more Park and Rides planned. So a whole mix of things to try and get people not to have to drive everywhere that they want to go.