Lessons in Congestion Pricing
Eillie Anzilotti lists five lessons in congestion pricing from cities that have implemented schemes similar to those in the works New York City, and considered much more speculatively in Los Angeles as well.
Anzilotti begins by noting that New York City has gone further with congestion pricing than any other city in the United States, despite several international examples. The slow progress of the idea is telling, and cautionary:
Car dependency’s relatively strong hold in the U.S.–even in the city where proportionally, the fewest people drive–posed a significant hurdle in the push for a fee on driving in New York City, which has been years in the making. Now that the policy is set to be introduced, some transportation analysts have expressed concern that in trying too much to appease the car lobby, New York’s policy might get too watered down to meaningfully address the city’s traffic and subway budget needs.
So to inform a realistic discussion of the idea, Anzilotti lists the following lessons, with more detail provided in the source article:
- Make the fee as broad as possible.
- Be ready with alternate options.
- Don't think of the policy as set in stone.
- Focus on the benefits.
- Just do it.