The Impact of Road Pricing and Workplace Parking Levies on the Urban Economy: Results from a Survey of Firms



The Impact of Road Pricing and Workplace Parking Levies on the Urban Economy: Results from a Survey of Firms

Authors

STILL B and JOPSON A, ITS, University of Leeds and GERRARD B, Leeds University Business School, UK

Description

In the UK legislation is currently before parliament to enable local authorities to implement road pricing or work place parking levy polices:_/Road user charging (RUC) polices would allow authorities to charge road users for using roads. Workplace parkin

Abstract

In the UK legislation is currently before parliament to enable local authorities to implement road pricing or work place parking levy polices:_/Road user charging (RUC) polices would allow authorities to charge road users for using roads. Workplace parking levies (WPL) would allow them to charge non-retail organisations for the parking they operate. Both policies are aimed at reducing congestion, particularly in peak commuting periods.

A principal concern regarding these policies is their impact on the economic vitality of city centre There has been some research into the general sensitivity of firms to transport factors (e.g. Nelson et al, 1994), and some research into the likely economic impacts of demand management policies, in particular RUC (e.g. Flowerdew and Stevens, 1996). However, there is hardly any information from key decision makers within the business communityl..The aim of this research was therefore to examine whether firms in a sample of cities perceive that these demand management policies may have an impact on the local economic conditions. The objectives were:

1. to determine whether business decision makers perceived that two demand management policies (WPLs and RUC), aimed at influencing car based cgmmuting, would have an impact on their firm's performance, and the city economy generally;

2. to examine whether there were any relationships between the attitudes expressed, and the type, size, location or financial performance of the firms, and if so, what inferences about the likely impacts of the policies on the urban economies could be drawn.

The research examined these issues through a questionnaire survey of firms, undertaken in three 'historic' English cities; Cambridge, Norwich and York. These cities are of similar size, have street layouts pre-dating motorised transport, have high levels of congestion, and face problems maintaining urban environmental quality 2..

The paper is structured as follows. Section 2 discusses the method applied to obtain the business responses. Section 3 presents descriptive statistics, and focuses on the current transport problems perceived by the firms, and their responses to the two policies. Section 4 focuses upon a multivariate analysis of the factors influencing relocation. Section 5 analyses the qualitative aspects of the survey. Section 6 then draws conclusions and policy implications from this work.

Publisher

Association for European Transport