Stockholm launches Congestion Charge

The Congestion Charge is a toll that must be paid in order to drive in a city centre. The most famous is in Central London, where it's managed by a sophisticated system of cameras that read the vehicles' license plates. It isn't cheap, either, with 8 GBP (paid in advance, 10 afterwards, which is 16-20 USD). Singapore has it too, and other places are considering implementation, such as Manchester (UK), Italy, Barcelona (Spain) and Japan. Manhattan has shelved the idea, at least for now.

Now it's time for Stockholm, Sweden's capital city. After several months of trials, those who want to drive around the city center from Monday to Friday, from 6.30 AM to 6:29 PM will have to pay depending on what time of the day a driver enters or exits the congestion tax area. The maximum amount of tax per vehicle per day is 60 SEK (roughly 9 USD).

Exempted vehicles are foreign-registered cars, vehicles adapted to disabled people, emergencies... Alternative cars, such as electrics, hybrids and E85-powered are exempted until the end of 2012.

Other ideas some cities are planning to reduce traffic problems (and probably getting money from drivers if they aren't provided an alternative), are banning old cars from city centers, creating Park&Ride spaces together with mass transit systems, favouring motorbikes and many more. What are your ideas to reduce traffic problems in cities?


[Source: Moteurnature, Wikipedia, BBC]

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