C-Charge Goes Up - Western Extension Goes

By BethPH Last edited 167 months ago
C-Charge Goes Up - Western Extension Goes

After many months of mutterings from the mayor about scrapping the western extension, he's finally gone and done it, giving drivers in Kensington and Chelsea early warning of a much anticipated Christmas present. But before people get too excited, an extra £2 is being added onto the C-charge in central London.

Getting rid of the questionably-consulted-upon western extension was a key part of Boris's election manifesto and he also made a point of throwing out Ken Livingstone's plans to increase the charge to £25 for vehicles with higher emissions; plans which famously led to a legal challenge by Porsche and a £400,000 bill for TfL.

Plans are also afoot to simplify the somewhat clunky payment system which has previously been criticised for depending on fines to pay for itself - forgetting to pay on the day led to a penalty charge, as Boris himself found out - but a new autopay scheme is planned which will give drivers a discount if they sign up for it.

Critics of the changes to the C-charge say the move will lose London £55m in revenue, increase congestion and reduce air quality still further, the latter being big news last year when Boris postponed Phase 3 of the Low Emission Zone (LEZ), though the effectiveness of the C-charge has been questioned when TfL's own figures showed that congestion levels were nearly the same as they were before the charge was introduced. City Hall's take on it is that Boris wants to make a point of giving Londoners a say in what happens in their city and with a previous consultation showing 58% of people living under the western extension voting for its removal versus 25% in favour of keeping it, it seems as though their voice is being heard at last.

Last Updated 26 May 2010