Electrification of the Great Western Railway – Padworth Lane Bridge Reconstruction
Frequently asked questions
Network Rail has worked with West Berkshire Council and Veolia to produce a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) for local residents and businesses based on some of the key issues raised at the drop in session in June. These are:
♦ Overview and working hours
Why does the road have to be closed?
Network Rail is electrifying the Great Western Railway and in order to accommodate the new trains and electrification equipment they need to reconstruct the bridge over the railway at Padworth Lane.
When is the road going to be closed?
From Monday 22 September for approximately six months. A signed diversion route for vehicles will be in place.
Will pedestrians be able to use the bridge while it is closed?
A temporary pedestrian bridge will be installed to maintain pedestrian access throughout the works. However, for the first few weeks of the road closure pedestrians will be allowed to use the existing bridge until the temporary footbridge is operational.
What does the work involve?
The demolition and reconstruction of the existing centre span of the bridge, the construction of new brick clad parapets and associated approach road works and the installation of safety fencing.
When will the existing bridge be demolished and the new bridge installed?
21:00hrs Saturday 8 Nov to 10:00hrs Monday 10 Nov – Demolition of existing bridge centre span
21:00hrs Saturday 15 Nov to 10:00hrs Monday 17 Nov – Installation of new bridge sections
21:00hrs Saturday 22 Nov to 10:00hrs Monday 24 Nov – Installation of new approach parapets
Will there be any night working outside the weekend closures?
There will be a number of Saturday night only closures of the railway for preparatory and follow up works which cannot be undertaken while the trains are running. The dates for these works are as follows:
Saturday 6 September through to Sunday 2 November– 10pm Saturday to 10am Sunday.
Saturday 7 March 2015 through to Sunday 21 March 2015 – 10pm Saturday to 10am Sunday. (dates subject to change)
Should you have any concerns regarding the impact of overnight works please do not hesitate to contact Richard Turner by e-mail: Richard.Turner3@networkrail.co.uk or on 01793 389759.
What are the general working hours for the bridge works?
Outside these periods, normal work hours will be between 07:30hrs – 18:00hrs Monday to Friday, with occasional Saturday working if necessary.
♦Diversion route – see map on next page
What is the proposed diversion route?
The alternative route for all vehicles is via the A4, A340 to Aldermaston, Reading Road and access Padworth Lane via Rectory Road. To facilitate access/egress a one-way system will be implemented on Silver Lane, School Road and Rectory Road (clockwise).
What measures will be put in place to mitigate the impact of the road closure?
Network Rail and their contractor Carillion have been discussing ways of mitigating the impact of the road closure with West Berkshire Council. These measures are still being finalised but include:
WBC arranging for vegetation to be cut back along the diversion route to improve visibility for vehicles
WBC has added the diversion route to their winter maintenance schedule (gritting)
Business open as usual signage at key locations
Additional one-way signage outside properties on the one way route
Installation of temporary traffic lights to assist with safe access onto two-way section of diversion route
Due to the narrowness of sections of the diversion route, a traffic light system for large vehicles from the waste management facility is being considered as a means of controlling vehicle movements on local roads
No parking signs will be installed along specific sections of the diversion route. Alternative parking arrangements will be sought for the area affected
Network Rail will consider the provision of a mini bus to assist with access to the village hall for specific groups who may not be able to negotiate the temporary footbridge (e.g. parent and toddler groups). Subject to demand.
♦Questions relating to the waste management facility
Can the facility be diverted to other depots in the area?
They cannot close the whole facility as there are limited facilities in the country which can compost food and green waste. Other sites will not have spare capacity to take in their 80,000 tonnes of waste and recycling. However they will be making the following operational changes which will reduce the number of vehicles using the diversion route:
They will ask the site staff to car share
They have secured a number of car parking spaces nearby for Veolia office based staff; so some staff will walk into the site from the A4
They will close the public Recycling Centre
They are not providing any activities at the Education Centre during the closure
Meetings and visitors will be kept to a minimum
Where possible they will tip refuse directly into an alternative facility in Hampshire
As the Green Waste Collection is seasonal there will be fewer truck movements during this time of year
Will the Veolia drivers respect the diversion route?
Yes, they will instruct all Veolia drivers to follow the diversion and stick to the speed limit.
When travelling the two-way parts of the diversion route please be aware that you may meet a Veolia vehicle coming the other way, so please be prepared to stop.
Will the public Recycling Centre at Padworth be open?
No, it will close for the duration of the Padworth Lane closure therefore reducing the number of vehicles using the diversion route to the Waste Management Site.
You will be able to use the facilities at the Smallmead Waste Recycling Centre, Island Road, Reading and the Household Waste Recycling Centre at Newtown Road, Newbury.
Will the farmers still collect compost from the waste management facility?
During these months they have less compost to be collected but they will still have farmers and third party HGVs collecting material from the site. Usually they produce a 25mm product which the farmers prefer. However during the diversion they will change their operation to produce as much 10mm product as possible which will greatly reduce the number of tractor/trailers using the diversion as 10mm is transported in bulk and used for landscaping.
Will the works compound affect the football pitches next to the village hall?
No, the location of the works compound avoids the football pitches.
Will the Village Hall be open during the closure?
The Village hall will be open as usual (following the Grand Re-opening on 19 September) during the closure – accessed via the diversion route or via the temporary pedestrian bridge.
Will the temporary footbridge be accessible during the weekend demolition and installation works?
Yes, the temporary footbridge will accessible throughout this time.
Who do we contact for more information, to raise concerns or make a complaint?
You can contact Network Rail’s dedicated community relations team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our 24/7 National Helpline on 08457 11 41 41 quoting GWMLE/Padworth Lane. Alternatively for more information on the project please visit http://www.networkrail.co.uk/great-western-route-modernisation
Unfortunately there have been reports that some people are ignoring the one-way system despite the signage. However, West Berkshire Council has asked the police to increase their presence in the area to help enforce the one-way system. We appreciate that the extended journeys are an inconvenience to many residents but please bear with us and we would encourage everyone to drive safely by adhering to the temporary restrictions in place. You should be aware that drivers ignoring the one way-system are risking a £1000 fine (max) and three points on their licence.
If you have any additional questions or concerns, please visit http://www.networkrail.co.uk or telephone our 24hr National Helpline on 08457 11 41 41 quoting GWMLE.
Community Relations Executive