King’s Road Reading to close for a month for underground work

King’s Road will be closed between its junctions with Duke Street and Abbey Square for one month beginning on Monday, February 20.

The closure is being undertaken so that King’s Road can be fortified, as it runs above the Holy Brook river channel.

The work involves strengthening 13.5 metres of tunnel by replacing steel deck beams which are over 100 years old and corroding.

It means drivers will need to follow diversions during the closure period which will last for four weeks.

Those hoping to access King Street, Minster Street and Gun Street will need to follow a diversion via Forbury Road, Blagrave Street, Valpy Street, The Forbury, Market Place, and High Street.

Outbound driver heading out of the town centre from King Street will need to use Minster Street and Gun Street, and can then use Bridge Street southbound to get into the IDR.

Existing bus lane restrictions on these roads will be suspended during the four weeks to enable the diversion.

Abbey Square is already closed to traffic to and from King’s Road until Tuesday, June 13 with the one-way restriction on Abbey Square suspended to allow all vehicles to enter and exit via Abbey Street.

The work is being undertaken by Reading Borough Council, which has invested £230,000 on this project, which itself is the fourth and final phase of strengthening under the King’s Road.

At the conclusion of the project, a total of  £650,000 will have been spent over the last three years, along with strengthening of the Abbey Square culvert in 2019.

Tony Page (Labour, Abbey), lead councillor for transport said: “This next phase brings to a close a series of complex but essential repairs to ensure we are able to futureproof the King’s Road area of Reading against increases in traffic.

“Around £650,000 will have been spent by the end of the project in the summer to ensure there is sufficient capacity in the structure to carry traffic above for decades to come.”

The Holy Brook is carried under the town centre using a network of culverts.

Reading Chronicle | Town Centre