Terror police to track capital's cars
Transportation Alternatives: Congestion Pricing
Implementing Road and Congestion Pricing-Lessons From Singapore (2005) [pdf]
Annals of Transport: There and Back Again
Congestion of the vehicular sort is a problem that continues to vex major cities across the world. Whether it be a long line of cars moving like slow-moving maple syrup off an exit from a so-called "expressway" or a phalanx of delivery trucks double-parked, congestion results in lost productivity and at times, even maddening frustration. Some cities, such as London and Singapore, have adopted congestion pricing schemes for vehicles entering certain roadways, districts, tunnels, or bridges during peak travel times. London has had a scheme in place like this since 2003, and Singapore has had one since 1975. Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York was rather keen on starting one as part of the city's long-term sustainability plan, but it was shelved earlier this week. Appropriately enough, Bloomberg floated the congestion pricing idea on Earth Day 2007, but legislators in the state capitol of Albany said that Bloomberg didn't address a number of rather basic questions about his proposal. After the proposal failed to pass this past Monday, Bloomberg commented, "I heard a lot of talk about the politics of congestion pricing, and all I kept thinking about was some people have guts, and some don't."
To enter the world of congestion pricing, visitors should start by reading through the first link, which happens to be a piece on the recent debate over introducing such a measure in New York which appeared in this Tuesday's New York Times. The second link will take interested parties to a piece from the Times of London which talks about how the congestion charge cameras in London will be used to address the "enduring threat" of terrorist car bombings. Moving on, the third link leads to a primer on congestion pricing offered by the Transportation Alternatives organization. The fourth link will whisk users away to a paper and presentation on the subject of implementing road and congestion pricing authored by Jeremy Yap, who serves as the deputy director for Singapore's Ministry of Transport. The fifth link leads to the homepage of New York's famed Straphangers Campaign, which has been advocating for the city's subway and bus riders since 1979. Here visitors can view awards as the "Pokeys" (slowest buses in the city) and lists of "The Unreliables", which are buses that tend to arrive in bunches or with big gaps during the day. Of course, there are also polls, reports, and a "Fun & Games" section. The last link leads to a very nice article from the April 16, 2007 New Yorker. This article documents, in great detail, what can only be described as "extreme commuting" on the part of stoic individuals in San Jose, Atlanta, and other regions around the US.