government has asked IT suppliers to bid to run demonstrations of road pricing
technology that could be used to implement congestion charging schemes
across the UK.
The Department of Transport has set aside at least £10m for the
projects, which aim to inform central government thinking on road pricing, and
influence the plans of 10 local authorities that are considering setting up
schemes in their own areas.
These time, distance and place systems would charge drivers according
to the amount of time they were driving, the distance they
drove and the location in which they were travelling. Officials are also interested in the possibility
of charging drivers according to the type of vehicle they use.
“We know that safeguarding privacy is important and that is why one of
the primary objectives of the demonstrations is to identify how a time, distance
and place scheme could be designed so that it safeguards privacy.
“We will explore a number of different system design and technology
options to see how this could be best done,” the Department of Transport said
in a statement.
The demonstration projects are separate from road pricing plans being
developed by local authorities in 10 large areas – Greater Manchester; west Midlands,
incorporating Birmingham, Wolverhampton
and Coventry; east Midlands,
in a joint bid by Leicester, Derby
and Nottingham; Tyne and Wear; Durham;
Cambridgeshire; Shrewsbury and Norwich.
Local officials in these areas have been asked to submit plans for
tackling congestion to the Department of Transport by July this year, and have
been strongly encouraged to make road pricing part of their strategies.
The government says it has not made a decision on whether to introduce
a national road pricing scheme, which would be politically controversial.
However, a clue about its intentions is contained in the new draft road
transport bill, which says that any road pricing schemes run by local
governments in future must be interoperable.
The government today submitted two tender notices to the Official
Journal of the European Union, asking companies to come forward for the
demonstrations, which are now expected to start in spring 2008.
We have written before
with regard to the 10 areas involved, which cover key motorway
interchanges and the surrounding counties, which effectively gives a National Charging Scheme, especially
when it is run in conjunction
with the National Roads
More lies, ignoring
the will of the people, just another day for this duplicitous government.
NuLab – Destroying Britain from the inside out.