The historic centre of Reading, the popular town an hour to the west of London, will undergo a major redevelopment, the local council has announced.

Three areas of the Berkshire town will be transformed, with a new public plaza, a ‘greenway’ with foliage, seating and a children’s play area, alongside greater pedestrianisation, cycle routes and parking.

The plan has four main aims:

  • To repair Castle Street, to renovate its historic buildings and streetscape
  • To make Minster Square a public open space, reviving Reading’s historic town centre
  • To develop Hexagon Quarter into ‘a new vibrant urban quarter’ with a focus on residential property and cultural facilities. A new site for the Hexagon Theatre is under discussion
  • To enhance Broad Street Mall and improve the Oxford Road and St Mary’s Butts district, with reduced traffic and extra seating. As part of the redevelopment, a high-rise block of as much as 20 storeys could emerge above Broad Street Mall

A public consultation has been launched, to gather responses and comments from members of the public and local residents to the plan.