Sunday, February 11, 2007

Congestion Pricing

Proposition 1. Any time you have congestion, it almost certain that market pricing is absent.

Proposition 2. Market pricing will almost always reduce or eliminate congestion.

From today's
NY Times:

Congestion pricing — the concept of charging higher fees to consumers for a good or a service at times of heavy use — is well established in businesses like hotels, long-distance phone service and air travel. And while London and Stockholm have successfully enacted plans that levy fees on drivers who want to enter traffic-clogged city streets, the United States has been slow to apply the concept on the roads (see graph above for an example of congestion pricing in California).

By making people take into account the true cost of driving — beyond gasoline, insurance and lease payments — congestion pricing in theory encourages people to car-pool, or to drive at different times of the day, or to take the train or bus.


At 2/13/2007 12:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem with congestion charging is not so much that it is a bad idea, and much more that nobody now trusts UK governments not to turn a good idea into an opportunity to tax and oppress the population.

The other problem is that the UK government has repeatedly demonstrated that it is utterly, completely incompetent at running any large project where technology of any complex variety is employed.

So, a project where technology is involved and a golden opportunity to raise taxes is present is a project which should be killed off as soon as possible.

If it goes ahead, it'll cost a fantastic amount to implement, won't work for a very long time and will act to increase the tax burden on millions when it finally starts working.

So don't encourage the silly buggers.

At 2/14/2007 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I completely agree with Dr. H. Road pricing is an eminently sensible solution to the problem of congestion. It should replace road tax. But I wouldn't trust this crowd of chancers as far as I could throw the lot of them not to introduce it in addition to tax. Or to make it work.

As usual, the correct answer when the Government asks your opinion is "no".

At 2/19/2007 7:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Log on to and fight these plans to spy on us and charge the poor off of the roads. Remember that name The Car Party because that is a real voice against road charging

At 2/20/2007 5:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Much of the increasing congestion on roads, at least in the south west, is due to this government's own policy of requiring local authorities to build large numbers of houses in rural areas where there is little work and inadequate public transport, so that those who live there have no option but to drive. Then the same government dreams up road pricing... draw your own conclusions.


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