Traffic Restraint As Alternative to Congestion Pricing

Yonah Freemark reports that there are more politically palatable ways to ease traffic congestion than congestion pricing.

In 2003, London implemented a congestion charge on drivers entering its central business district. The scheme was a success, generating revenues for mass transit and decreasing car movements in the mandated zone 39% while increasing ridership across railways, underground and buses.

However, The 2008 effort to institute a similar plan in New York fell to its feet in the face of organized political opposition. Freemark explains an alternative strategy, similar to the one adopted in Paris, whereby the city simply makes driving more difficult through the addition and expansion of bicycle and bus lanes, and increased parking costs. Even with no clear financial reason to stop driving, "the city saw a 17% decrease in driving between 2002 and 2007."

Freemark notes, "Paris' accomplishment, though not as large in percentage change as London's, was arguably more significant since it affected the entire city of 41 square miles, versus the original eight square miles of the London congestion zone (later roughly doubled)."

Freemark suggests that this could be an alternative for progressive US cities where congestion pricing is still politically unthinkable.

Full Story: An Alternative To Congestion Pricing: Roadway Traffic Restraint


Build Your Own Paper Block City

Urban Fold is an all-inclusive kit that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.
building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.

City Coasters

Hand-drawn engraved maps of your favorite neighborhoods are divided up across 4 coasters making each one unique.
Book cover of Where Things Are from Near to Far

Where Things Are From Near to Far

This engaging children's book about planning illustrates that "every building has its place."