From the start of 2020, Beech Street in London will become the UK’s first emissions-free street when it bans petrol and diesel vehicles from entering it.
The City of London Corporation (CLC) said that from spring next year, the road will only be able to be used by zero-emissions vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians. The move is part of an 18-month experimental traffic order, which will allow air quality and traffic to be monitored and measured. Should it be successful, further roads across the city could be emissions-free, too.
CLC Environment committee chair Jeremy Simons said: “Drastically reducing air pollution requires radical actions, and these plans will help us eliminate toxic air on our streets.”
Advanced warnings are set to go into place warning drivers of fuel-powered vehicles that they won’t be allowed to use the road, which runs under the popular Barbican Estate, with a diversion and signage to be implemented, too.
Drivers of petrol and diesel vehicles that violate the zone can be fined up to £130, though this is halved to £65 if it’s paid within two weeks.
It should be noted that emergency vehicles, refuse collection and deliveries (regardless of fuel type) will be exempted from the order.
London is a city right at the forefront of wanting to reduce its emissions – already implementing the Congestion Charge and Ultra Low Emissions Zone in a bid to help curb vehicles from using its roads, and to encourage drivers that do to upgrade to cleaner models.