Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 17, 2003
By: Kevin Drum

LONDON CONGESTION CHARGES....Well, what do you know? It looks like London's congestion charge experiment has gotten off to a smooth start:

It was like a Ken Livingstone utopia not even a pigeon in sight.

....London was like a ghost town and possessed an eerie beauty.

Further ahead there was another reminder of Ken Livingstone's radical transport policy, with Trafalgar Square undergoing pedestrianisation. Parking spaces were, unsurprisingly, in abundance and I pulled up a stone's throw from Oxford Street in no time.

Today is a school holiday, so traffic was lighter than usual anyway, but even so the whole thing is apparently working pretty well. People know how to pay, the call center is up and running, and the first 80 fines for nonpayment are scheduled to go out tomorrow.

If it continues to go smoothly, I guess the next question is what they're going to do with the estimated 130 million per year that they get from the charge. If Livingstone is able to genuinely improve public transport with it, the whole thing might become fairly popular. If not, well....

Kevin Drum 4:21 PM Permalink | Trackbacks

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