Matt Smith comes up with a valid point:
One small point: if it really was to run eastwards from the M3 to join the M25 at Wisley, it would have been deemed to start in the "2" zone for motorways. Hence, it wouldn't have been called the M31 if it had actually been built, that is if the Wisley extension had been part of the original plan. So, a number in the 20s would have been chosen.
Paul Townsend has an interesting little tip:
"A route approximating to this is used as an M4/M25 avoider for those in the know. A coach I was on from South Wales to Eastbourne several years ago (before I joined Sabre!) went this way - A329(M) to Bracknell "Twin Bridges" roundabout, then via Bagshot to the M3 at J3, up the M3 to join the M25. The driver explained that this was quicker than taking the M4/M25 junction.
Would have been a very useful addition to the network around here: Especially seen as a lot of through traffic uses the A329(M), A329 and A322 to avoid the Heathrow section of the M25.
One question though:
You mention that the southern part of the route (M3 to M25) was added to the plan at a later date.... If this had been built then the number M31 would have been out of zone?
A plan appeared about 10 years ago to build a Bracknell bypass (because all the M3-M4 traffic is clogging up the town, and an accident means townwide gridlock and suspension of the bus services).
By the looks of the map, the bypass would have used part of the M31 alignment. I objected to the building of the bypass as it would have opened up the cul de sac my street is a branch of - had they decided to build a motorway instead the noise would have been terrible.
The plans were dropped, and, since the green area south of Bracknell on your map is Royal forest, I'm not sure that plan would have seen the light of day anyway. My preferred solution is dualling Old Bracknell Lane (A322) between Twin Bridges Roundabout and Bill Hill, then a junction improvement at the roundabout where the A322 becomes Bagshot Road. This should probably be at grade, as a dual carriageway through route across the roundabout.
Simon Hardy has a fairly unique reason for not wanting this road:
Never thought I'd heard myself say this but I would protest against this road if it was to be built now.
Only reason for me doing so, is that the proposed route that I've seen on here and on SABRE goes straight across my father's grave. If they shifted it slightly so it goes across the Great Hollands Estate, that would be fine!
"Wack0" likes the idea:
The M31 or at least a Bracknell Bypass would be good. Dualling the A322 where it is now S2 where it multiplexes with the A3095 is not an option - it is S2 because Bracknell Fire Station is in the middle of it all.
Phil Deer writes:
I was amazed to read that the DoT decided not to build this motorway. I've just started working in Bracknell, and approaching from the south takes over 45 minutes to cover the distance from the M3 to the bottom of the A329(M) where my offices are. Bracknell seems a prime candidate for some form of bypass - Highways Agency, please take note!
Ron Strutt notes [Jan 09]:
There is a great deal of logic in this proposal, especially the southwards extension of the A329(M) to meet the M3. The extension to Wisley also makes sense when considered solely in terms of motorway traffic, but it has no regard of the impact on local traffic. Such is the danger of relying on consultants who are only considering a limited brief.
The proposal for a junction at Woking, at the intersection of the A320 and A245 is on the site of today's Six Cross Roads roundabout. This is busy enough at the best of times but add in a motorway junction and the situation would be chaos. Added to which, the map shows access to Monument Road, which, in effect, acts as an eastern bypass for Woking, relegated to a side turning off the A320, creating yet another bottleneck.
Jon Keen remarks [Dec 07]:
I remember the furore in the local Bracknell papers at the time these proposals came out. As I remember, this involved an elevated section going over the Glebelands mini-estate behind Bracknell Sports Centre - and naturally the residents were up in arms about this. Bearing in mind how long it took the Sandhurst by-pass (which serves much the same purpose as a link between "Twin Bridges" and M3 junction 4) I'm not surprised that this never came about as Berkshire residents are NIMBY experts!