Cllr Paul Dimoldenberg, Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality at Westminster City Council has written to Transport for London (TfL) in support of its proposed expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), which if approved will stretch across all of Greater London.
Cllr Dimoldenberg has also expressed his support of the changes to fees for the scheme that will encourage more to drive cleaner vehicles over the years to come. Westminster is committed to improving air quality and reducing travel by car is one of the most effective ways to do this.
Being at the heart of London, the council is determined to play its part to ensure the safest and healthiest environment possible for residents and the hundreds of thousands who work and visit the city each day.
Increased funding investment in recent years has allowed Westminster to invest in green infrastructure such as EV charging points:
- The council has over 1,000 charging points – the most in any London borough – and is aiming to have over 1,500 by the end of 2022.
- The council is also looking at increasing EV charging provision for freight vehicles and next month is launching ‘Smartcharging’, which will see reduced prices to residents for overnight off-peak EV charging from lamp column charging points.
- The council is also currently consulting boat owners at Paddington Basin to identify opportunities to improve the air quality along the canal and the potential of turning the Basin into an eco-mooring zone.
Westminster is also hoping the increased fees and charges will increase equitable funding to TfL for re-investment in the public transport network, especially the London Bus Network. The council recently opposed the proposed bus cuts by TfL in central London due to a lack of funding by central Government. In a time where active travel in the borough is encouraged through walking, cycling and use of London’s public transport, so cutting back on our bus network makes this more difficult to do.
Cllr Paul Dimoldenberg, Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality at Westminster City Council, said:
Westminster has some of the highest carbon emissions and poorest air quality of any local authority and urgent steps needs to be taken if we want to improve. To create a cleaner air environment, we fully support the proposals set out in the TfL consultation. To supplement these proposals, we want to encourage people coming into our city to participate in active travel by walking and cycling more and using public transport, which is why we have opposed the proposed recent bus cuts, as buses are a lifeline for so many people in the borough.
We continue to deliver a range of walking and cycling schemes, including a recent decision to deliver a Brompton bike hire scheme proposed at sites near some of our busiest rail stations like Paddington, and also increasing the number of cycle storage units. And for those who do need to use a vehicle, we have over 1000 EV charging points to use. All of these measures will help support us in our ambition to make Westminster an even better place to work, visit and live in for current and future generations.