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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 June 2007, 12:47 GMT 13:47 UK
Brakes on one-way town ring road
It was hoped the one-way plan could ease congestion on the IDR
The brakes have been put on controversial plans to turn Reading's ring-road into a giant one-way system.

Reading Borough Council's new transport chief, councillor Tom Crisp, has announced the formation of a "public commission" to decide on its future.

The commission will tackle the town's current and projected traffic problems.

Neighbouring Wokingham Borough Council threatened High Court legal action to prevent turning the Inner Distribution Road (IDR) into a one-way route.

Reading council had hoped to start work turning its IDR into an anti-clockwise system early next year.

But Wokingham Borough Council objected to the plan saying it was based on "flawed" traffic data and it was concerned about the knock-on consequences for its roads.

We will suspend all proposed physical works on the IDR whilst this reconsideration is underway
Councillor Tom Crisp

In March, Reading council rejected calls for a public inquiry into the plan and said it would defend its decision in the courts if it came to it.

But in an apparent U-turn on Monday evening, Mr Crisp, who recently replaced the council's former transport boss John Howarth, agreed to an independent "public commission".

He said: "Of all the potential schemes laid before us to improve traffic movement in central Reading converting the IDR to a one-way system appeared the best.

"It has been clear recently that, while congestion is regarded as a problem in Reading, many people do not appreciate either the full extent of present congestion in the town centre, nor the implications for further increases in traffic.

Residents' proposals

"The cabinet therefore believes that we need firstly to debate and agree the challenge that faces the town in managing present and future traffic, and secondly to find a solution to that challenge that finds widespread support.

"In the meantime we will suspend all proposed physical works on the IDR whilst this reconsideration is under way.

"It is the cabinet's intention that, once the commission has reached its conclusions, the council's future policy will be bound by its findings."

Also, the council said it will invite traffic proposals from local residents and organisations, including from the opposition parties.

Legal challenge to one-way road
19 Apr 07 |  Berkshire
One-way ring road gets go ahead
20 Mar 07 |  Berkshire
Ring road plan faces legal battle
04 Jan 07 |  Berkshire
Funding boost for ring road plans
18 Dec 06 |  Berkshire
Legal challenge to ring-road plan
26 Sep 06 |  Berkshire
Green light for one-way ring road
08 Sep 06 |  Berkshire

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