02:40PM, Friday 27 September 2019
The final piece in Maidenhead Station improvement ‘jigsaw’ was approved on a permanent basis at a cabinet meeting last night.
Since the start of the summer the right-hand turn on the A308 from the exit to Queen Street has been closed as part of a pilot.
A decision was supposed to be made earlier this year, but it was pushed back at a Maidenhead Town Forum meeting in July, with the former council leader Simon Dudley demanding a more thorough consultation.
Also as part of the project the Broadway has been converted to a two-way system and in October the station forecourt will be upgraded. Parking will be relocated to Stafferton Way multi-storey.
The total cost of the project is £4.5 million– the majority of which is funded by the Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership.
Leader of the council, Andrew Johnson said: “That pilot has proved to be broadly successful, in my view as the lead member, we have received written confirmation from all the three green light services that they can see no significant impact upon their operational ability.”
He said: “We have seen significant improvements - all be it, it is a semi-construction sight in pedestrian access - and already a look ahead to what it will eventually look like.”
He said the phasing of the traffic lights has been a problem due to the fact the temporary lights cannot be synced to the permanent lights, particularly at the end of Shoppenhangers.
“Going forward the new revised signalling will be fully integrated, it will be smarter and it will enable traffic flows to be improved,” he said.
Cllr David Hilton (Con, Ascot & Sunninghill),cabinet member for finance said priority should be given to pedestrians as people who drive through in cars ‘just think about getting from A to B as quickly as they can’.
“It is the people who live and work in this area we need to give priority to."
He added: “This is an excellent scheme that starts to show that. It may take a moment longer to get through Maidenhead, but for those thousands of people who walk to and from the station and vibrate around Maidenhead it is going to be very beneficial.”
Cllr Donna Stimson (Con, St Mary’s) said: “I’m looking forward to seeing this come to fruition, and as it does I look forward to adding to it with increased biodiversity.”
She describes this as being green walls, increased green infrastructure and buses and public transport.
She said: “That aspect of it is missing and until that’s in place it’s quite difficult physically to see how it will work.
“I’m sure it’s been really carefully thought through but I’m quite anxious about it.
“I’m supportive of it and I look forward to seeing it in place but I want to see the bits that accompany it.”
Cabinet unanimously agreed the proposals.
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