Be informed about the Scandria®Corridor

20 July 2018

Urban Vehicle Access Regulations

Stockholm: Achieving sustainable mobility using urban vehicle access regulations (UVARs).

Stockholm is recognised as a pioneer of using urban vehicle access regulations (UVARs) to reduce congestion, improve air quality and promote alternative transport modes within the city centre. The city ranked second worldwide in the Urban Mobility Index presented in the Arthur D Little Future of Mobility report 3.0, which was published in April 2018. Stockholm scored 57.1% compared with the worldwide average of 42.3% and was very close to the first-place city, Singapore, which achieved 59.3%. The Urban Mobility Index assesses cities according to the maturity, innovation and performance of their urban mobility solutions. The Stockholm Transport Authority has taken a combined approach to UVARs, which feature:

  • a low emission zone (LEZ), known as the environmental zone, to help improve air quality in the inner city by regulating access for heavy vehicles using older or more polluting technologies and fuel types
  • a charging scheme to reduce congestion in the city centre and along main access routes which extends beyond the LEZ limits
  • additional access regulations on large and heavy vehicles in Stockholm that vary by vehicle (type, weight, height and length) and the time of day
  • tighter regulations on vehicles in the Old Town – alongside a total ban on motorised traffic in the historical centre except between 06:00 and 11:00

Recently, several EU Member States have adopted legislation that makes it easier for city authorities to apply and enforce UVARs within city boundaries. Many European cities have since announced their intention to apply access regulations.

This case study presents the initial process and subsequent evolution of UVARs in Stockholm, discussing the results so far – and the intended next steps in Stockholm’s journey with the aim of providing best practice examples – and demonstrating the transferability of the approach.

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