Editor's choice
26 Nov 18

Cleaning traffic management instead of cleaning traffic

Improving air quality is leading to specific traffic bans or restrictions in various cities. The British city of Derby has chosen to do it differently. 

Derby was one of five cities challenged by the UK Government to improve air quality. Whereas Leeds, Southampton, London and Birmingham are introducing pollution charging schemes, and (diesel) bans, Derby decided to take traffic management measures instead. 

Which of the 3?

The Derby City Council created three air quality plans, two of which would have involved charging measures. After consultation between the Council and fleet industry representatives, the Council decided to implement the option without charges but with traffic management measures. The BVRLA, the UK fleet leasing association, welcomes Derby’s choice for traffic management rather than pollution charging schemes.

The current preferred plan focuses on traffic management to reduce congestion and improve air quality. The main measure focuses on the reduction of traffic flows through Stafford Street by limiting traffic and redistribute it to other parts of the highway network.

Clean Air Incentive Scheme

Additionally, a Clean Air Incentive Scheme will be introduced to encourage the scrapping of vehicles that are older and non-emission compliant. In return, mobility credits for public transport, cycling and other alternative mobility will be provided, together with a grant programme to encourage the purchase of ultra-low emission vehicles alongside other grants that are already available from the central government and certain vehicle manufacturers. The grant would be accessed through vehicle dealerships and operates in a similar way to central government incentives that are already in place.

Moreover, the City Council wants to stimulate low emission vehicles by various supporting projects as well, such as installing more EV charging points and initiatives to help people to purchase and use EVs or hybrid vehicles. 

Eventually, the City Council is considering various initiatives to help support businesses to use more low emission vehicles. The Council wants to work together with stakeholders to help identify and put in place measures to assist businesses.

The final detailed plan will be published later this year, after a public consultation of the proposal.

Authored by: Fien Van den steen