The Mayor of London is calling for “greener means of travel” as new data has revealed traffic on London’s roads costs the capital’s economy £5.1bn a year, or £1,211 per driver.
Public transport plummeted by 95 percent and is currently still significantly behind pre-pandemic levels, with buses at 70 percent of normal demand and Tubes at 55 percent.
However, car travel is said to have been close to pre-pandemic levels for much of the latter half of 2021 despite it being estimated that more than a third of car trips made by Londoners could be walked in under 25 minutes and two-thirds could be cycled in under 20 minutes.
Sadiq Khan has warned that the capital could “move from one public health and economy crisis to another” caused by dirty air and gridlocked roads.
“Whilst we have made huge strides in increasing walking and cycling in London throughout the pandemic, car use has remained consistently high,” said Khan.
“If we do not double down on our efforts to deliver a greener, more sustainable future we will replace one public health crisis with another – caused by filthy air and gridlocked roads.
“The cost to both Londoners and the capital cannot be underestimated, with days wasted stuck in traffic, billions lost to the economy and increased road danger and health impacts. Most traffic is caused simply by there being too great a demand for limited street space, meaning the only long-term solution can be to significantly reduce car use in favour of greener means of travel.”