A £5 congestion charge should be applied to each cab-user

News Desk (03 October, 2018) Columnists

GREEN SOUTHWARK: Donnachadh McCarthy - This is the method being introduced for cab congestion charging in New York

11037News columnist Donnachadh McCarthy

The north of Southwark lies within the central London congestion charging zone.

It was introduced by Ken Livingstone in 2013 and led to an impressive drop of 80,000 cars entering the zone daily. This equated to a nearly 40% reduction, despite a growing population.

There was also a drop of 16% in carbon emissions. However, Livingstone inexplicably exempted cabs from the charge.

The number of black-cab daily entries into the congestion zone remained unchanged at a very high 60,000 and recently with the explosion of Uber, there are an additional 80,000 cabs clogging up the congestion zone.

Transport for London estimate that black cabs emit up to 20% of transport pollution in central London. It reported last month that cabs are more likely to cause serious injuries to people cycling than even HGVs! Cabs (black+mini) now make up to 60% of all cars in the congestion zone and take up about 40% of road-space, but only carry a tiny 1.7% of all trips in London.

Finally, after 15 years, the London Mayor Sadiq Khan is now proposing the first small step to tackle the cabjams clogging up our streets, blocking people on buses and emergency vehicles and polluting schools, playgrounds and parks.

He is currently consulting on a modest proposal to apply the congestion charge to minicabs, by ending the unfair exemption that they currently get.

A number of road safety groups are supporting the Mayor but some of us are calling on him to also apply the congestion charge to blackcabs.

We would like a £5 congestion charge to be applied to each cab-user, rather than the cabbie, to encourage people to walk, cycle or bus it instead.

This is the method being introduced for cab congestion charging in New York.

If you support these steps to help reduce pollution, danger, climate emissions, noise and congestion in the north of Southwark, just email consultations@tfl.gov.uk, saying you back the ending for the unfair charge exemption for minicabs, but would like the exemption to be ended also for blackcabs and that a £5 charge be applied to all cab-users.

 

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