19 Oct 2015:
Oslo, Norway, to Ban
Cars in Its City Center By 2019
Bikes line the streets of central Oslo, Norway.
Oslo will ban cars
from its city center by 2019, becoming the first European capital to adopt a permanent prohibition on cars in its downtown area. The newly elected city council announced that the city would also build at least 60 kilometers (37 miles) of new bike lanes by 2019 and provide a “massive boost” of investment in public transportation. Business owners in central Oslo fear that the car ban will reduce revenues, but leaders of the new council said the ban could even increase visitors to downtown and that the city would take steps to reduce negative impacts, including allowing vehicles to transport goods to stores and conducting trial runs of the ban to work out problems. Oslo, with 600,000 inhabitants and almost 350,000 cars, would be the first major European city to institute a permanent car ban in its center. Paris experimented with banning cars in parts of its center last month, and London has congestion pricing to reduce traffic in its city core.
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