Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Let's keep road user charging simple please

The defeat of the motion 'that road user pricing is the only sensible solution to road congestion' in the recent debate in NCE (NCE 22 May) is not surprising.

The satellite based system of monitoring all vehicles for every mile travelled implied in Professor Hazel's proposal would be very expensive to install and run and has little chance of actually working.

Does anyone believe that the UK could cost effectively accurately record the movements of 33M vehicles and bill their owners each month?

The more modest proposal for road charging lorries was abandoned on cost grounds.

The 1.8M signature petition against satellite based road pricing showed motorists are against this system.

Probably less than 10% of the 380,000km of our road network suffers congestion from time to time.

Surely it is much simpler to deal with this using "tag and beacon" on the congested affected roads.

This offers low cost flexible charging on a "pay as you use" basis to maintain a minimum speed on each discrete road section.

In return for paying another congestion charge tax, motorists need to be offered a package of measures to help them.

The most obvious would be a commitment to build more road space from the charge revenues.

The expensive failure of the London charge scheme has not helped matters, nor has the present government's poor record on new road build and penny pinching measures such as the use of hard shoulder running on motorways.

GORDON TAYLOR (M), director, Better Transport for Britain, 33 Royal Avenue London SW3 4Q

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.