Letters, Feb. 4-7: Geniuses at UDOT at it again
Geniuses at UDOT at it again
Fresh off a push to allow more cars to enter Park City through Kimball Junction, the brain geniuses at UDOT are at it again, but this time with S.R. 248 as it enters Park City from U.S. 40. The harebrained schemes cooked up by UDOT to “alleviate” traffic in this corridor, like a tunnel, will do no such thing because increasing road capacity for cars will only result in one thing: more cars.
If UDOT, the state, and City Council were really serious about alleviating traffic in and around Park City, the only answer would be to more accurately price our roads by implementing decongestion pricing.
Decongestion pricing has many benefits, namely: reduced vehicle miles traveled (VMT) and a corresponding reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, reduced fatalities from traffic violence, and additional raised revenue that can fund quality of life enhancements for Parkites.
For evidence that this approach works, we just need to take a lesson from London, which implemented decongestion pricing in 2003. Since the city started to charge cars for entering the city center, decongestion pricing has led to a 30% decrease in traffic, reduced traffic fatalities by 40%, increased biking mode share by 66%, and in FY 2021 raised 232 million pounds in net revenue.
I am under no illusions that Park City and London are comparable metropolitan areas but the results of the London experiment cannot be denied. Most notably, this solution did not require an increase in road capacity to achieve its goals.
More roads are not the answer to traffic problems; using your roads more wisely is. Price the roads and reap the rewards in the form of less traffic and reduced greenhouse gas emissions, safer streets, increased revenue, and a higher quality of life.
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