Downtown Oslo may ban pretty much every car

No Meager Temporary Bans Or Congestion Fees For This City

Oslo might prevent most people from driving their cars into the city's center within the next four years, UK's Independent says. Yes, that means you, too, Tesla Model S drivers. The ban would be the first of its kind in Europe.

The Norwegian capital would complement the ban by building more than 35 miles worth of bike lanes by 2019 while bolstering the city's public transportation infrastructure to make life for those looking to get around a little easier. Trams, buses, and delivery vehicles would still be allowed to drive downtown.

Other European cities have also tried banning vehicles in downtown areas in an effort to curb traffic and pollution. Aside from the traditional pedestrian areas, places like London and Madrid have long instituted congestion fees. This past March, Paris enacted a 24-hour ban on even-numbered license plates after instituting a similar ban (for odd-numbered plates, of course) a year earlier.

Norway has long been pretty out front when it comes to addressing private transportation. The government offers hefty incentives for electric vehicles, making Norway a veritable piggy bank for companies like electric-vehicle maker Tesla. In fact, the country was so aggressive with plug-in vehicle incentives that the 50,000-vehicle threshold for plug-in incentives was reached this year, two years ahead of schedule. The perks included tax exemptions, extra parking, and bus-lane use, and were designed to capitalize on Norway's glut of hydroelectric power. As a result, there were several months where either the Tesla or the all-electric Nissan Leaf was the country's best-selling vehicle, which is something that'd be totally unheard of here in the States.

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