Cars and van

News from Caroline Russell: London needs road charging to stop car trips rising

26 July 2018

Caroline Russell AM is urging the Mayor to speed up plans for a new London-wide road-charging scheme as new figures show vehicle traffic has gone up across the city for the second year running. [1]

Bus, tube and train trips are down 8 million in the first quarter of 2018/19, compared to the same period a year ago. And the growth in cycle trips has also slowed.

TfL boss Mike Brown said: “There have been fewer people cycling and using public transport, and increased private car journeys - something we don’t want to see.”

Caroline Russell backs smart road charging – where drivers are charged by journey distance and how polluting their car is instead of a flat rate fee like the T-charge.

An independent report by Integrated Transport Planning (ITP) commissioned by TfL, recommended a road pricing scheme as well as other measures, including workplace parking levies, to help bring down congestion in London that is predicted to cost £9.3bn by 2030. [2]

Caroline Russell says:

These new statistics should shock the Mayor into action. On his watch, London is losing the fight against congestion. In fact, things are getting worse.

He has only built 10 kilometres of new cycle route since his election and won’t publish his cycle plan until the autumn – well over halfway through his Mayoralty.

He needs to be more ambitious and bring in smart road-pricing, a fairer system that charges people for how polluting their vehicle is and the length of journey. 

At the moment he only has plans for a flat fee which sees someone going to a doctor’s appointment down the road paying the same as someone driving around, and producing masses more pollution, all day.

Londoners need to be able to trust the air they breathe and with high pollution alerts becoming more and more common with our soaring temperature this summer we need action now.

Notes to editors

[1] Transport for London (TfL) Quarterly Performance Report, Quarter One, 2018/19, as presented to the TfL board meeting yesterday at City Hall 

[2] Understanding and Managing Congestion, an independent report produced by Integrated Transport Planning (ITP) for TfL on behalf of the GLA

[3] Caroline Russell response to the Mayor’s draft Transport Strategy, Nov 2017

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