Boris Johnson wouldn’t typically be hailed a hero for the environment yet he has recently asked government agency Transport for London to look at the implications of additional charges or an all-out ban at peak times of HGV’s in London city centre.
The feasibility study has been commissioned in an attempt to find solutions to issues such as poor air quality, traffic congestion and safety concerns and in the light of a recent vote by the London Assembly to ban HGVs in the capital during rush hour. That unanimous vote was taken back in November and the Mayor has been under pressure to progress the issue in recent months.
Capacity is also a key consideration as it is estimated that over the next five years there will be an additional one million road trips going through the London transport system. As more than 90% of freight is delivered on the road network, and about 30% of morning rush-hour traffic is assessed to be delivering goods, a reduction of freight transport during busy periods would have a significant impact. However a rush-hour ban would obviously affect delivery schedules considerably and costs may increase if new charges are to be applied.
An HGV ban has already been introduced in some other cities; Paris being one of the most high-profile and congested cities to have introduced a ban almost ten years ago; the city council there banned HGV’s between 5pm and 10pm. Warsaw and Madrid have similar schemes.
One of the other suggestions to be examined in the feasibility study is to evolve a freight transport model that uses Consolidation Centres outside urban areas, so that the delivery of goods into the heart of a city centre can be co-ordinated and shared, with a correlating reduction in the number of journeys into the city. This type of approach is one of the many topics the EU sponsored project, LaMiLo is also investigating.
Freight Forwarding Services by Cargocare
Cargocare operates freight forwarding services between Ireland, the UK and across Europe, so these plans by Boris are of significant interest to ourselves and our clients – we’ll keep you up-to-speed on any further developments or news on this front.
We are moving forward with our own initiatives in respect of transport in city centres too and we recently introduced new small electric vehicles to our fleet; to handle deliveries in rush hour and for the transport of smaller items into city centres.
In the meantime – our freight forwarding business continues to grow. As a family-run company, we work through a hands-on management style designed to ensure that each delivery is completed successfully for our customers. We also have a network of proven partners in the freight market, having been in business for more than 30 years now. And we operate a daily express freight service between Ireland and the UK, with departures from London, Kettering and Bristol to Dublin and daily returns to the UK.
If you have freight forwarding requirements, please do contact us today and let’s discuss your needs – we’d be delighted to offer a competitive quote and an excellent service.