Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Nasal Spray for Manhattan?

New York City is set to receive $71 million in federal transportation money to untangle traffic jams, convert to cleaner fuels, promote pedestrian safety, and other methods for achieving cleaner air. This is all well and good, but it’s time for New York City to start talking about congestion pricing. Since February 2003, London has had congestion pricing in the central business district during peak hours, and some reports put the reduction in traffic at 30%, greatly improving taxi and bus service, and raising revenue for public transportation. Details of how it works can be found here, but suffice to say that despite initial opposition, congestion pricing is now widely embraced in London and policy makers are even talking about expanding it beyond central London. Look for the Regional Plan Association of New York and New Jersey to start pushing the idea now that the organization came out on the winning side of the West Side stadium battle.