Fri, 17 Mar 2017
WEST Berkshire Council will invest more than £120m over the next five years.
A large chunk of the money, which will come from government grants and developer contributions, will be spent on highways schemes to improve road surfaces and reduce congestion.
There will be investment in flood prevention and ongoing maintenance of public rights of way, as well as additional primary school places in Newbury, Theale and Burghfield.
Money will also be set aside for a new unit for children with autism in the primary phase.
The construction of Highwood Copse, the new primary school set to be built in Newbury, is currently due to start in June, subject to planning permission.
There is money available to provide places at The Winchcombe, Fir Tree and Speenhamland primary schools to compensate for the delay in the opening of Highwood Copse and to meet additional ongoing pressure for primary places in Newbury.
Around £48m over the five-year capital programme will go into street care and includes £6.9m of council funding, £34m of external grant funding and £7.7m of developer funding.
A total of £18.5m has been allocated to carriageway resurfacing, along with a further £3.2m for the maintenance of other major highway assets including bridges and street lighting.
A total of £7.2m will be invested in drainage and flood prevention, which includes £5m from Defra for major flood alleviation schemes.
In total, £2m will be invested in walking and cycling, with £800,000 from the Local Enterprise Partnership going towards the development of a new National Cycle Network Route along the A4.
This also includes substantial footway improvements funded from developer money in Newbury and Aldermaston.
Almost £16m will be invested in network management and road safety improvements, with much of this funding going towards improving traffic flow on the A339 and supporting economic growth.
Approximately £1.1m will be put into public transport infrastructure, which includes a new public transport interchange in The Wharf.
The five-year programme also includes £1.3m (an average of £262,000 per year) on essential maintenance and modernisation of leisure centres.