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Congestion charge will cut SE1 traffic

There will be 34 checkpoints along the southern boundary of SE1 when the Congestion Charge is introduced on New Yearâs Eve next year.

The main entries will be Vauxhall, Kennington Road, Elephant & Castle, Great Dover Street and Tooley Street. Butler's Wharf is outside the 5 charge zone and Kennington Lane will be toll-free.

With the announcement of a consultation on the scheme, Borough Market trader Andrew Sugarman has asked for an exemption for all Borough Market Traders. However the charge will only be levied between 7am and 7pm on Mondays to Fridays.

It is expected that not only will traffic be cut by at least 15% but that the charge will raise 2000 million to invest in public transport. Bus fares are to be frozen at existing levels. Mayor Ken Livingstone describes the proposals as the “most comprehensive and ambitious plan to expand and improve transport that London has ever seen”.

The 5 fee will allow visitors to SE1 to go in and out as many times as they wish in one day. A camera will read numberplates and trigger a debit to the credit card of registered drivers. Unregistered drivers will have until 7pm to pay at a shop agency or by phone.

SE1 residents are expected to be eligible for a 90% discount if entering the zone.

Those with disabled stickers will be exempt along with taxis, motorbikes, buses, Post Office vans, police cars and electric vehicles.

Estate agents in SE1 are predicting a further rise in property prices in the inner area as a result of the Congestion Charge. Agents Felicity J Lord at Tower Bridge likened the possible impact to the arrival of the Jubilee Line.

The Congestion Charge consultation period launched by Transport for London during last month is due to end on Friday 28 September. Information leaflets are available on 0800 0853939

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