Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council have published an updated set of proposals for a Zero Emission Zone (ZEZ) in Oxford city centre. These updated proposals follow 15 months of talking to businesses, residents, transport operators and health experts in Oxfordshire.
Included in the set of proposals are targets to achieve zero emissions in the city by 2035. From 2020 onwards, the ZEZ could apply to some vehicles and journey type, specifically all non-zero emission vehicles could be banned during certain hours from parking and loading on the public highway with restrictions increased gradually to therefore achieve an emission-free city centre by 2035. The vision towards zero emissions sees an advancement from 2022 to 2035, when both councils are considering further possible measures for high emission vehicles to encourage a faster conversion towards low emission and zero emission vehicles. These ideas will be thoroughly researched and developed to then be tested and consulted on with businesses and residents. Consultations already took place in late 2017, where more than 750 residents and businesses took part in a six-week public consultation, with around 70% of respondents backing a phased approach to the ZEZ.
The first step towards zero emissions will commence this month (January 2019) when City councillors decide on the Hackney carriage licensing changes, which would therefore see the introduction of these taxis in the city centre by 2022 as well as the introduction of Euro 6 buses. This ZEZ would be one of the first in the world to be introduced with several other cities in Britain and other countries looking at ways to improve air quality by restricting vehicle access.
An end goal of 2035 has been set to provide residents and businesses in Oxford with certainty about the future of transport and travel in the city enabling preparation to occur.
The full article can be found here: http://news.oxfordshire.gov.uk/plans-for-zero-emission-zone-in-oxford-move-ahead-in-the-journey-to-zero-emissions/