Congestion charge in San Francisco

Posted: December 3, 2008 in environment
Tags: , ,

sfcongestion01

The image above is quite amazing for two reasons: the amount of small cars parked in this street in San Francisco and the traffic congestion they seem to symbolise. On the surface it seems contradictory to choose ownership over a small car rather than using pubic transport given that the latter is equated with much higher environmental credentials. The answer to the seeming inconsistency probably is that ecological concerns don’t rank as highly as the desire to have you own car. So it makes sense that, as Inhabitat reports, San Francisco will put its hands into people’s hip pockets as they enter the city – by charging the US’s first road toll. The congestion tax follows examples set by cities like Stockholm, Singapore, Milan and London (although the new Tories Mayor there unsurprisingly is winding back its further rollout); it will be used to further ramp up San Francisco’s increasingly sustainable public transportation options, which include biodiesel buses and electric muni trams and trolleys. It’s the kind of vision that Australian and especially Sydney traffic planners and politicians don’t even dream of.

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