London boroughs get new funding to tackle air pollution and accelerate transition to ZEVs

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The mayor of London, Transport for London (TfL) and London Councils have announced £766,000 (US$1m) in new funding for three local boroughs to help accelerate the switch to zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) to help tackle the UK capital’s air pollution problems.

The authority funding will be matched with around £875,000 (US$1.2m) from the London boroughs involved, providing a total of £1.64m (US$2.26m) in new finance for the ‘Neighborhoods of the Future’ projects.

Camden, Hackney, and Hammersmith & Fulham councils will receive funding for three new projects, which will build on the six that were awarded last year. The three projects demonstrate creative thinking in the drive to encourage Londoners to make the urgently required switch to cleaner zero-emission vehicles.

The successes from these demonstration projects in helping people travel to work, school or the shops in a more sustainable way can be replicated across the country as part of the national fight against air pollution.

The winning Neighborhoods of the Future bids, which will give local communities the infrastructure they need to embrace less polluting forms of transport, are:

• Camden – 8,500 pupils at 23 schools will benefit from a ‘School Low Emission Neighborhood’, which involves streets in the vicinity being restricted to electric-powered and local access only, electric vehicle (EV) charging units in school car parks, and points to power-up at lampposts close to home;

• Hackney – electrified market streets that will help businesses and customers make the transition to cleaner vehicles. New charging points on three market streets in the borough will be built into existing features such as bollards and posts, servicing street traders, commercial vehicles, and public buildings;

• Hammersmith & Fulham – a Hammersmith Town Center Low Emission Zone (LEZ) that prioritizes and encourages the use of the cleanest vehicles. It will build on a proposed zero-emission street on Hammersmith Grove, and will be complemented with the installation of an electric taxi rank, a last-mile courier hub, and communication support.

The London boroughs of Barnet and Redbridge have also confirmed their future involvement in the program, and will be developing projects for funding as part of the London-wide effort to clean up the city’s air.

“If we are to bring London’s air quality within legal limits, it will require us, local authorities and government to work closely together,” noted Alex Williams, TfL’s director of city planning. “These schemes are a fantastic example of how partnership working can lead to innovative projects that make a real difference.”

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International magazine and the Traffic Technology Today website since he joined the company in May 2014. Prior to this he worked on some of the UK's leading consumer magazine titles including Men's Health and Glamour, beginning his career in journalism in 1997 after graduating with a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).

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