Birmingham has recently set out its plan to cut emissions in the city centre. Amongst some of the changes they will be rolling out will be:
- Employers possibly being charged for each parking space they provide
- A new ‘segment scheme' which will restrict private car trips between these segments and the centre itself
- Improved cycling and walking routes and more pedestrian zones
- More housing to be built on council-owned car parks while pavement parking will be removed alongside the removal of free parking in the city centre and elsewhere
- Residential streets across the city to become 20mph by default
In my opinion, this plan is reasonable. Not sure about ‘bold’ or ‘ambitious’ especially when we compare this to Oslo, a city that has basically become car free ALREADY. For starters, they could make public transport free. This would massively incentivise people to use it more often. They have also talked about closing the A38 (a road leading right through the city centre) this would certainly be more bold and ambitious, but without more solid plans for an alternative, it might not be a great time to suggest it.
In any event, the A38 needs to be closed, or phased out, or only allow electric cars in the near future.
What do you think about the new changes to Birmingham city centre? Do you think these plans could be rolled out further to the rest of the UK? Do we think they will be effective? How do they compare with other plans for cities throughout the UK?