Equal misery disincentives

Another way of encouraging people to take public transport the New Zealand way. We discouraged people to drive into the city by raising ERP charges, and in the process aiming for faster and smoother traffic flow. Such an approach will favour those who can afford to pay the hefty charges to drive happily into the city. Cannot afford don't drive. Wellington Mayor Kerry Prendergast's approach was different. The only charge that is high is parking. (We have high parking charges too) No ERPs. In a way, it is also pay to go in. But there is a subtle difference. Everyone can still drive in without paying if you don't park. The actual incentive is to slow down the traffic deliberately in favour of pedestrains. The motorists will learn that it is faster and more efficient to take public transport to the city. Rich or not so rich can drive into the city but to bear with the inconvenience of slow traffic flow. Equal misery. The catch is that commercial vehicles too will be caught in the slow traffic as well. Not a very good idea and not very pro business. In our case, commercial or no commercial, just pay lah. Also not favouring business and driving up business cost. Straight jacket? I think we are smarter. But could be better if a distinction is made to be more pro business and pro public transport operators, including taxis.

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