Stockholm has it; London has it; Milan has it; even Singapore has it. It’s congestion pricing, the charging of fees for driving in crowded districts, and it is once again being raised as a possibility for San Francisco’s downtown and South of Market.
For the past few years, Bay Area drivers have already had bridge tolls charged at different rates during different times of the day. If the current renewed interest in congestion pricing for downtown catches on, it could lead to drivers being charged a fee every time they enter or leave the central business district.
The Examiner’s Will Reisman reported that the San Francisco County Transportation Author-ity is warning that unless private automobile traffic is reduced by 27 percent over the next 30 years, traffic will be too crowded and dangerous.
“We’re going to have to figure out ways to get people out of their cars and onto other modes to get into the Financial District or downtown,” Supervisor Jane Kim told KQED’s Bryan Goebel. “Or we’re going to have to ask people to pay if they do choose to drive, so we can help improve that infrastructure.”