Road pricing: Darling speaks!

Satch

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http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_roads/documents/page/dft_roads_038153.hcsp

Translation: nothing will happen in the life of this Government because Gordon Brown says we cannot afford it and really we do not have much of a clue anyway. Bung a few quid into studies and more research over the next 5 years and hope that the Insurance Companies will solve the problem for us.

However, that is my manifesto pledge to deal with!
 

S.Minguijon

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The automobile is the most attractive product that the man has never built, because it transmits us the sensation of overcoming our limitations (speed, power, image, independence of the environment) with a perfect domain (comfort, sensation of security).

On the other hand the automobile is a tool of mobility that can radically improve the quality of the humanity's life.

But the truth is that in many places the abuse of the automobile is causing serious problems.

- The traffic accidents.
- An unstoppable demand of infrastructures of transport.
- Models of cities and life that are untenable for a long term.
- Destruction of the small trade.
- Contamination, emissions of CO2, climatic change.
- Waste of enormous quantities of energy.
- Decreasing the life quality of our cities.

In general all the politicians are aware of these problems, but they don't dare to face with them because the solutions are always unpopular and dangerous for their political future.

I congratulate Mr. Darling for their courage when outlining the problem openly.
 

golden-1

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what it actually comes down to is "we'd like to tax mr and mrs road user some more, but we've looked at the cluster fcuk that is the congestion charge, and cant figure out how to do it on the current budget. therefore we're just bgoing to increase tax on fuel, and insurance, and cut funding for public transport, so people just have to give us more money." :mad:
 

S.Minguijon

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Mr. Darling will find many problems in the application of his project.

There are many economic interests in game that they tried to boycott government's plan, such as the industry of the construction, the great trade, the industry of the automobile, etc

But maybe the most critical thing is that this plan will generate an enormous demand of public transportation of good quality that will be very difficult to satisfy and if this problem is not solved simultaneously to the installation of the project, a strong popular reaction will take place.
 

Benzowner

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I wonder why they have not thought of raising the minimum driving age to say 25. That would give them eight years of negative growth in the number of cars on the road and eight years to try to solve the problem that they know will be heading their and our way. Not popular, may put some insurance companies out of business :D It may however, put a lot of motorcycles on the road, no congestion charge for Ken :D
 

sasha

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on a practical note; using satellite technology is obviously going to be cost effective and negate the laying of fibre and pipe up and down the road network.

However, by definition satellite technology is not 100% reliable.

ANPR - auto number plate recognition is nearly 100% reliable in almost all operating conditions. My point is when ANPR, fails it is due to a proper failure or an exceptional circumstance, not a likely scenario e.g., inclement weather at (say) dusk in a highly built up city.

With ambiguity around the satellite id'ing the journey, there is no failsafe way of charging people through satellite technology.

Unlike the insurance companies who can factor into their profits, the cost of unidentified journeys and / or contract with the consumer that a minimum daily charge is made to contribute to journeys that fail to get identified properly, the government cannot.

What would the government do? We think you went from A-B but didn't quite catch the return beam at point B, let's settle on charging you from A to halfway to B? That's a commercial negotiation, tricky to understand how it would work consistently across the community...

In fact if you look at Oyster policy, you will see that when they cannot ID your destination, the journey gets hung and you need to explain at the station. You can say anything you want, as they cannot prove it and if you dispute it, they TFL have to take the hit and anull the hung journey.

wrt budget, we have more money than we know what to do with (capitalist economies), any bank would lend to the government for a public initiative i.e., they know they would get it back irrespective of circumstance. That's why government keeps trying to transfer risk over to others in quasi public / private ventures.

no i rather fear the goven wants have their cake and eat it, mandate the private sector to run the thing AND push risk their way by not underwriting the scheme...

Unfortunately you then legislate your way around the anomolies you impose by creating a restricted warped market and find that somehow costs always rise (through not having shareholder accountability), you cannot advertise and only ever hope to keep the scheme afloat by charging (read exploiting) on a stealth basis. E.g, congestion charge. If someone was to take a whole life of the scheme impact analysis then the answer would be obvious - scrap these schemes and live with the consequences or be a man and legislate properly.

Decreasing speed limits would go a LONG way to improving speed / flow along networks which is a bigger factor in congestion.

Also trip analysis is the most accurate way of understanding traffic build ups and hey guess what? The culprit will be events that stimulate trips that have a fixed start time e.g., school, football matches.

A really progressive government would do something interesting around school flexi time, reintroducing the old school bus, making sunday a full shopping day (in fact if as an adult you could shop late at night, then you would spend more time with the kids anyway) and a general rethink around some of the constraints that force the pinch points in the road network.

I simply cannot understand why everyone talks about congestion so much (London or elsewhere) and then accept that congestion often disappears in school holidays. THERE is step one of the problem, why keep creating great big charging solutions???
 
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jeremytaylor

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The problem is, in the South East at least, that the population has risen, yet infrastructure (of all types) hasn't. If you are going to allow the population to increase, you have to accept that people will move about more and need modes of transport (of all types) to do this on. The government wants their cake (immigration, more taxes, etc.) and eat it (i.e. not spending those taxes on transport).

And a city without movement is dead. How many well-intentioned pedestrianisation schemes have caused a decline in trade for the shops they were supposed to serve.

The simple answer is that we have to build more roads. In not many years time fuel cell technology will probably have been cracked (if the current vested interests allow development) and then you will have polution free cars. Then what will the objection to roads be, I wonder?
 

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