Driver`s Group Slams London`s Biased Transport Consultation
The Association of British Drivers (ABD) is concerned to note that many people are unaware of an important consultation.
A long document, the Mayor's Transport Strategy, was released in October. 1
Its proposals are far-reaching and, given its significance, ABD feels that the consultation has been severely under-publicised.
ABD London Media Spokesman Brian Mooney remarked:
“One reason for this might be that the MTS is seeking approval for the extension of the discredited Congestion Charge to other areas, and even drops a hint about it becoming London-wide. 2
The consultation leaflet has been anything but impartial, leading readers towards agreeing with a loaded statement supporting 'fair road pricing'.” 3
“The leaflet makes no attempt at any objective discussion on what might or might not be fair. Nor does it remind the reader that drivers already pay five times over for their emissions and the paltry investment in roads. There is nothing fair about adding to this burden and pricing people off the road. 4
Instead of proposing more stealth taxes (such as on parking), the Mayor should be giving more back to those who pay for London's roads. For instance, giving higher priority to fixing London's crumbling road surfaces, which threaten the safety of car users, cyclists and pedestrians alike.”
The ABD urges people who live or work in London to have their say before the consultation ends on 12 January. 5
The ABD is pleased to make available its response on other controversial proposals on www.fairdealabd.org.uk 6
NOTES FOR EDITORS
1. Draft Mayor's Transport strategy (354 pages long)
2. A diagram on page 252 hints at the prospect of Greater London-wide road pricing. Ironically, this contradicts the immediate proposal to remove the Western Extension Zone, which met a public backlash in a preliminary consultation in 2008.
3. Leaflet 'Help shape London's future' (Mayor's Office/Transport for London)
4. TRANSCOM House of Commons transport committee report on road user charges, 2009, HC103
5. Responses to the MTS proposals can be emailed to email@example.com or sent by post to PO Box 65064, London SE1P 5GE
6. Other controversial MTS proposals include:
- 'Demand management' measures such as environmentally-inflated parking charges
- 'Where possible', car access is to be restricted in residential areas to give unprecedented priority to cyclists
- Expensive measures to increase cycling such as 'cycle superhighways' that remove scarce road space
- Unspecified 'special charges' might also be imposed on drivers to provide new or upgraded facilities (e.g. river crossings).
Notes for Editors about the ABD