Vienna plans to ban motorcycles from the CBD in a disconcerting move that is spreading around the world to curb traffic congestion.
This is despite Vienna being ranked the eighth best city in the world for commuting, according to German automotive website, Kfzteile24.
The study looked at traffic jams, parking, road rage crashes and fuel costs. Perth rated the best place in Australia for commuting at 19th, followed by Brisbane at 45th, Melbourne 55th, Adelaide surprisingly at 57th and Sydney worst 61st.
Last year, Melbourne renewed calls for a CBD congestion tax, but now the plan is to include motorcycles and scooters.
It’s not alone as cities around the world have introduced or are introducing congestion charges and bans on motorcycles not only to reduce traffic congestion but also air pollution:
- Singapore has road-user charges in a CBD zone resulting in a 20% reduction in delays and plans to ban pre-2003 motorcycles throughout the city in 10 years;
- Milan’s Ecopass charges all vehicles entering a designated traffic restricted zone and bans old cars and bikes that do not meet set emissions standards;
- A cordon charge in Stockholm has led to 24% fewer commuter trips by car (motorcycles and scooters are exempt), with most people switching to public transport and Gothenburg following the same example;
- China and Brazil are considering congestion charges in various cities;
- Oregon, USA, has trialled a voluntary pay-per-mile distance charge resulting in a 22% drop in traffic in peak hours and a 91% approval by participants; and
- London’s Low Emissions Zone charge has helped stabilise traffic congestion over the past decade despite population growth of 1.3 million. Motorcycles, scooters and electric vehicles are exempt, but from next month some older bikes will cop a £12.50 daily fee to access the new London Ultra Low Emissions Zone.
Vienna plans to ban all kinds of motorised vehicles, including even electric bicycles, motorcycles and scooters.
The only motorists excluded from the CBD ban are those who have a private garage in the vehicle-free zone and also have a parking permit.