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South Wokingham Distributor Road

South Wokingham Distributor Road

SWDR Map 2020.jpg

Why we're building the South Wokingham Distributor Road

We are committed to the development of 2,500 new homes in the South Wokingham major development (technically called the South Wokingham Strategic Development Location). The aim of the planned South Wokingham Distributor Road is to create access for these new homes and minimise the impact of the increase in traffic on nearby residential roads.


Our Local Plan (Core Strategy), which earmarks South Wokingham as a major development site, identified a possible relief road for South Wokingham. We considered 3 potential routes and made a technical recommendation that Option B - the central alignment - be taken forward. We consulted on the 3 route options in early 2014 and found there was a clear public preference  (81 percent) for Option B.

In November 2014, our Executive gave approval for Option B to be taken forward, subject to minor route refinements. 

In March 2015, our Executive approved plans for the Eastern Gateway section to be progressed, in advance of the rest of the distributor road.

South Wokingham Distributor Road Public Exhibition

Drop in exhibitions took place in Spring 2019. Residents were invited to make comments prior to the planning application for the next phase of the road being submitted later this year.

Project overview

The distributor road is to be delivered in sections, as identified in the map at the top of this page.

  • Montague Park - The developer led section of South Wokingham Distributor Road (SWDR), called William Heelas Way in Montague Park, was completed in Summer 2015 by David Wilson Homes as part of Montage Park housing development
  • Eastern Gateway - This section of the SWDR will also be called William Heelas Way and joins the previously completed section of William Heelas Way through the Montague Park development with Waterloo Road.
  • Central section and Western Gateway - From the Eastern Gateway section the SWDR will run west across Easthampstead Road to Finchampstead Road - connecting at the existing Tesco roundabout. It is also proposed to improve the junction of Molly Millars Lane and Finchampstead Road, a scheme known as Western Gateway.

The 2010 Wokingham Borough Council Local Plan (Core Strategy) identified a number of major development locations across the Borough. A number of strategic transport improvements were highlighted in the Local Plan (Core Strategy). Policy CP21 and Appendix 7 specifically identified a relief road for South Wokingham.

We examined the potential route options of a link road to manage the impact of the increase in traffic due to the new houses in South Wokingham. We considered 3 possible routes - northern, central and southern - and recommended the central route.

From June to August 2014, we consulted on route options for the South Wokingham Distributor Road. We got about 304 responses. There was a clear public preference for Option B – the central route. 

On 27 November 2014, our Executive gave approval for Option B to be taken forward, including investigation of 2 minor route deviations: (a) south of Knoll Farm and (b) west of Easthampstead Road. 

Refinement work has been undertaken to further understand the delivery implications of the preferred route. This involved undertaking surveys works and developing an outline highway alignment. The alignment was developed to minimise land take, maximise developable areas, and to take account of the need for flood mitigation.  

On 26 March 2015, our Executive gave approval for the Eastern Gateway scheme to be developed in advance of the rest of the distributor road. The works include a rail overbridge at Montague Park. 


The advancing of the Eastern Gateway section would:

  • Enable the closure of the Waterloo Road Level Crossing which would provide significant improvements to both road and rail safety for all users  
  • Assist in unlocking some development areas
  • Assist in alleviating some road traffic cutting through residential roads to the north of the railway

Details of the planning application progress are available under the 'Planning application' tab below. 

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You can also sign up to our contractor Balfour Beatty’s individual project update newsletters by emailing them at SWDR@balfourbeatty.com.

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