VolkerHighways installs eco-friendly plastic kerbs for Wokingham Borough Council

On behalf of Wokingham Borough Council, VolkerHighways has installed plastic kerbs made from recycled materials as part of a trial on a new cycleway in and out of Wokingham town centre.

VH plastic kerbs for Wokingham Borough Council_web2.jpg
VH plastic kerbs for Wokingham Borough Council_web.jpg

Work along London Road in Wokingham is nearing completion, with residents now able to cycle into the centre of town from the Coppid Beech roundabout/A329M interchange. The route, travelling out of town, is due for completion within the next month. Once this is finished, the road will be resurfaced overnight during the autumn to minimise disruption to residents.

VolkerHighways has been working with Wokingham Borough Council to trial more eco-friendly options on the roads. Using plastic kerbs reduces the amount of carbon produced in manufacturing, transport and construction by about 40 percent, compared to concrete kerbing.

Plastic kerbing, which looks almost identical to concrete kerbs, contains about 88 percent recycled material and is cut with hand tools so, unlike concrete, it does not create crystalline silica dust. As the kerbs weigh less than traditional materials, it also reduces handling injury risks, and can be installed without the need for mechanical equipment.

The plastic kerbs will be trialled on London Road, as well as other high-use roads. The kerbs will be monitored over a period of time to assess performance, resilience and environmental benefits. The council may also look to trial them in other areas, such as drop kerbs.

Alistair Thompson, managing director of VolkerHighways, said: “It’s great to work with a forward-thinking council that’s focused on meeting environmental targets.  We’ll be working closely with the council to assess the viability of a wider roll out of this new eco-friendly material.”

Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, executive member for highways and transport, said: “We’re already seeing people take advantage of the route into Wokingham from the Coppid Beech roundabout. We continue to try and innovate where we can on the highways, and these plastic kerb trials are another example of a greener solution by effectively using recycled materials.”

Cllr Gregor Murray, executive member for climate emergency, said: “Trials such as this are an important step as we continue to drive our carbon footprint down and be a carbon neutral borough by 2030. Providing cycling infrastructure, such as this, helps achieve this goal too, by making it easier for people to get out of their cars and into town easily by bike.”

Providing residents with the infrastructure to make more sustainable transport choices is vital in the council's efforts to reach carbon neutrality by 2030. The aim is to save residents money, improve their health, reduce congestion and improve air quality.

Once work on London Road is completed, the new route links Newbury, Reading, Wokingham, Bracknell and Ascot – forming a new National Cycle Route (NCN422). It will fulfil Wokingham Borough Council’s commitment to provide a portion of the new national cycle route between Reading and Windsor Great Park.


Picture caption: (L-R) Cllr Gregor Murray, Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, Adrian Spencer (operations manager, VolkerHighways), Steve Palmer (project manager, Wokingham Borough Council Highways)