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Congestion Pricing

Hey, Gov. Hochul, Here’s How Congestion Pricing Would Have Remade Manhattan

Just in time for Sunday night's failed launch of congestion pricing, check out this Streetfilms video from Stockholm.

Photos: Clarence Eckerson Jr.|

We could have had it all: (Clockwise from top left: A busy pedestrianized street, great bike infrastructure, another car-free street that’s friendly to businesses and people, and the Grand Central of Stockholm during rush hour).

Just in time for Sunday night's failed launch of congestion pricing, Streetfilms's Clarence Eckerson has returned from Stockholm with a new video that shows how great a city can be when 20 percent of the cars are removed.

See it for yourself:

  • Public space repurposed for people, not cars.
  • Business-friendly shopping strips filled with strolling pedestrians instead rushing drivers.
  • Calm and relaxed residential streets where kids can even play (remember that?!).
  • Public transit that isn't stuck in private traffic all the time.

Meanwhile, the film features a bike ride with Lars Strömgren, also known as the Ydanis Rodriguez of Stockholm, and a rare Streetfilms guest spot by yours truly:

Watching the film makes a mockery of Gov. Hochul's claim that she undid congestion pricing on behalf of "working" New Yorkers. Every "working" resident of Stockholm has benefitted from that city's decision a generation ago to charge a small fee to drive into the most congested part of town — with the money going towards urban improvements.

It's something Streetsblog also chronicled during a fact- (and fish-) finding mission to Sweden earlier this year:

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