As the congestion zone in the British capital tightens fast, new counter measures are being set up. Among them a delivery service for businesses that uses electric cargo bikes and trikes to replace delivery vans in Central London.
The City of London Corporation’s Environment Committee announced that a cargo bike scheme run jointly with zero-emission delivery operator Zedify will be rolled out to all local businesses in the Smithfield and Farringdon areas.
Couriers will use electric cargo pedelecs and trikes with load capacities of 100 and 250 kilos respectively to make deliveries to and from a hub located at West Smithfield. The cargo bikes can drop the goods off anywhere within the Congestion Charge zone. The aim is to fill a gap diesel vans may leave as running one through the city centre is becoming increasingly costly.
The initiative also serves to establish the area as the City’s Low Emission neighbourhood. Jeremy Simons, chairman of the environmental committee, describes the new service as a “milestone” that is “part of our wider plan to help reduce emissions and improve air quality in the Square Mile. The service will provide local business with an eco-friendly way to move their goods around and reduce air pollution for local residents and workers.”
The scheme belongs to the Corporation’s outline for a Low Emission Neighbourhood (LEN). Jointly funded by the Mayor of London, plans for LEN include new EV charging stations, green taxi ranks and other air quality projects in the Barbican and Golden Lane Estate areas.
Additionally, the Mayor’s office together with London’s King’s college launched the City Air app. It indicates low-pollution travel routes as well as alerts when air pollution reaches dangerously high levels for Londoners.
London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) has been widened since its introduction. By 2020, it will include the whole of Greater London reportedly. For this year, stricter emission controls have been applied to taxis. Cabbies must now ready their cars to be able to drive with zero emissions as this will be a must comes 2019.