If ever a big step forward were needed in a major project, now is probably the right time to announce it.

But the task of putting together the spatial framework for the Arc will be a curious one.

As Chris Holdup from mode Transport Planning points out, the need to physically move around may have been reduced and forecasting what infrastructure will be needed in future is probably more difficult than it’s ever been.

Reduced numbers of journeys would seem to chime well with the call to abandon the Expressway – the road link between the cities – but, in the long term, how realistic is it to expect many thousands of new jobs and new houses to be serviced purely by rail and existing roads?

It seems unlikely people working in cutting edge sciences and wanting to travel between two of the world’s top universities, will happily rely on rail services rather than go door-to-door in their own vehicle.

However, if this is to mean a new era in fast, reliable train travel, then perhaps that is something we can get onboard with.


The arrival of Sports Direct at Princess Square in Bracknell might not be the biggest story of the week but it at least suggests Bracknell is working to fight the looming economic downturn.

It has since emerged that Sports Direct is to close its shop at The Peel Centre, an out-of-town shopping park with an uncertain future, when it opens at Princess Square. That can only help give a boost to the centre of Bracknell, which was rated by KPMG recently as the country’s most vulnerable.

With work beginning on The Deck, an impressive new phase of The Lexicon, Bracknell needs new occupiers and if they are willing to sign up for a refurbished part of the old town centre, then the future may be a fraction brighter than it seemed a few weeks ago.

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