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Future mobility requires tax changes and road user charging, says BVRLA

Local and national government visions of a mobility revolution will require wide-ranging Government support to help encourage people to walk, cycle and use more public transport.

The BVRLA’s Cars in the City report

That’s the finding of Cars in the City, a new report from the BVRLA and advisory firm Global Counsel, which makes a number of recommendations, from tax changes to the implementation of road user charging on a national level.

“Most visions of future urban mobility show leafy, virtually car-free streets full of people walking, cycling and using public transport,” explained BVRLA chief executive Gerry Keaney.

“This is an exciting future, but how do we get there from today’s situation, where, even in London, the car remains the most popular single mode of travel?”

“Our towns and cities need a more intelligent, sustainable use of the car. Promoting the use of car rental, car clubs and other flexible types of car use can make that happen.”

Launched today at the association’s Future Mobility Congress event in Birmingham, the Cars in the City report provides some practical recommendations that local and national policymakers can use to start driving this behaviour change. These include commissioning an independent and wide-ranging review into the modernisation of the motoring tax system, to incentivise the use of cleaner cars and flexible forms of car use.

The report also calls on the Government to develop a national road-user charging policy framework that can support cities and regions if they choose to implement local motoring charging schemes.

And the analysis says the Government should support the roll-out of intelligent parking systems that can reduce congestion and provide more parking space for flexible car use providers.

Other suggestions include promotion of the roll-out of Mobility Credits in Clean Air Zone areas, which will drive behaviour change and support those hit hardest by the need to upgrade their vehicles. And the BVRLA has said that local authorities should be required to promote flexible options to households ahead of the implementation of Clean Air Zones.

The report follows on from the BVRLA’s recent Road to Zero Report Cardwhich found that Government plans for ‘net zero’ emissions by 2050 will be derailed unless action is taken on electric vehicles – and further underscores the need for long-term transport planning and funding, improved EV charging infrastructure and a more supportive motoring tax environment.

“Our towns and cities are the economic heartland of the UK and are experiencing rapid population growth, which is why policymakers have made future urban mobility such a priority,” added Keaney.

“All our research demonstrates that ultra-low emission cars, used intelligently, are a vital part of delivering this vision.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.