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Congestion Charging

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Thursday 8 August 2002 2.18pm
Tony,

London Bridge to Croydon: 14 minutes by train.
Croydon to Weybridge: 48 minutes by train.
Weybridge to Feltham: 30-40 minutes by train.

Now, how long do you sit in your car from SE1 to Croydon in the morning?

Another option you wish to consider is leaving your car parked at the Croydon office and driving to Feltham and/or Weybridge from there.

But, your predicament highlights another major problem society has: because we are so aclimitised to travelling everywhere by car, we take it for granted to be able to travel to several locations easily each day. Society MUST pay a price for such travel requirements.

If your employer requires you to be at these three sites each day, then lobby your employer to be more reasonable (I mean, reasonable to the environment).
Thursday 8 August 2002 2.22pm
Another thought for Tony, sitting in his car travelling from SE1 to Croydon, Feltham, Weybridge and back to SE1

Sitting in your car you cannot use the time productively, because (hopefully) you are concentrating on your driving.

Sitting in a train (going against the flow, so the trains are relatively empty), you have the ability to do some work, or read a book or whatever. So you could factor that into your working day.
Thursday 8 August 2002 3.14pm
Mike

I am not defending my actions. I have tried all the suggestions you make. I genuinely look forward to a system that allows me to abandon my car and use a transport system. Actually it takes me exactly the same amount of time to walk to London Bridge, take the direct train, and then walk again to the office, as it does to drive .. 40 mins total journey time. And guess what? I really enjoy the days my schedule allows me to take the train. In the meantime I accept being taxed and charged as the govt sees fit in the hope that the monies are being channelled into TfL. I view this in exactly the same way that, as a single gay man with private health care, my taxes are being used to pay for education and health services that I, nor my non-existent dependants, don't use. I happily pay this because I can, and it is right to do so.

Tony
Thursday 8 August 2002 4.00pm
I can put my hand up and own-up to being an un-necessary motorist commuter into SE1. I frequently take large piles of work home and I often help others move their professional tools within SE1 so the car is useful. I also enjoy listening to Radio4 en route. The congestion charge will have the desired effect on me because I will not pay 5 a day for the convenience I currently enjoy.

Just for the record I live at Clapham South, often cycle to work, frequently take the Northern Line to Elephant followed by a 20 minute walk to my office. I will enjoy both of these routes much more if the congestion charging gives me cleaner air providing fewer allergines to fuel my asthma. I just hope that a licence to pollute does not become another corporate perk.
Thursday 8 August 2002 4.55pm
I forgot to answer one of Mike's questions ..

Leave the car overnight in Croydon? Are you mad?! Have you been here? You think SE1 has a crime problem! Actually it wouldn't be covered on insurance if I did.
Thursday 8 August 2002 4.55pm
A friend of mine came to stay with us in SE1. He has lived in California for many years (some 30 or so years), after having previously lived in London. He was amazed at several major changes since being away:
1. the improvement in air quality,
2. the reduction in traffic jams, and the appearance of fewer cars on the road.
3. the improvements in public transport

After much discussion with him, we ended up feeling that among factors contributing to the improvements were:
1. More cycle friendly roads
2. The use of bus lanes
3. More buses.
4. Less parking facilities, and what parking facilities are there are charged at a premium rate.

I seems that walking, cycling and buses are the real way forward. The reduction of cars reduces accidents and reduces death on the roads, reduces congestion and reduces pollution. If congestion charging yet improves the air quality and reduces the amount of traffic still more then every one is a winner.

I worry that the edges of the congestion charge area may suffer and have to bear the brunt of great congestion and more parking.
Thursday 8 August 2002 5.05pm
..and another thing .. hurrah for all these lovely new buses but what was wrong with a good old double decker? Is Ken trying to force me (literally) off the road? These articulated beasts surely cause more congestion than they solve.
m
Thursday 8 August 2002 5.17pm
IF you are so bothered about pollution surely you could adopt the alternative you are suggesting Tony H takes and move out of London. Firstly, you will have no cause for complaints and secondly your children will be much healthier.

I've lived in central London for the lasy 18 years and I certainly will oppopse the congestion charge - I only use the car at weekends but I really do not fancy spending extra money on top of my weekly shopping.

And another thing, if the charge is not to apply after 6.30pm do you really think that people will not wait within the charging zone for 10-15 mins to avoid paying. Of course, they will - as somebody else pointed out - the areas around the charging zones will become one huge carparks and in the long term the charge will not stop motorists driving to Central London.

So, out with Ken - how much more harm is he going to do to us this time round - I worked for him during the GLC era and that was bad enough
m
Thursday 8 August 2002 5.24pm
IF you are so bothered about pollution surely you could adopt the alternative you are suggesting Tony H takes and move out of London. Firstly, you will have no cause for complaints and secondly your children will be much healthier.

I've lived in central London for the last 18 years and I certainly will oppose the congestion charge despite the fact that I will get 90% discount as a local resident - I only use the car at weekends but I really do not fancy spending extra money on top of my weekly shopping or Gof forbid I forgot to buy something and have to go to the shops again

And another thing, if the charge is not to apply after 6.30pm do you really think that people will not wait within the charging zone for 10-15 mins to avoid paying. Of course, they will - as somebody else pointed out - the areas around the charging zones will become one huge carparks and in the long term the charge will not stop motorists driving to Central London.

So, out with Ken - how much more harm is he going to do to us this time round - I worked for him during the GLC era and that was bad enough. Judging from your response I take it you have not got a car and have no intention of getting one. Clearly you are the only person within the entire UK who enjoys public transport. Yuck!!!!!!
Thursday 8 August 2002 6.46pm
They should not have congestion charging, rather they should look at what Tokyo and singapore have done about their terrible congestion. In Tokyo, the MOT test equivalent is so stringent that few cars over three years old can pass it. This has the effect of making motoring more expensive, with the added side-effects of boosting the motor industry and getting cleaner engines out on the streets more quickly.

In Singapore, a 200% tax on new vehicles makes many people think twice about car ownership.

Neither of these ideas are a panacaea, but they are far more likely to reduce congestion than asking rich people to pay 5, which is a drop in the ocean to some of these city trader types :-)
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