OSLO PLANS TO BAN CARS IN CITY CENTER BY 2019
Oslo announced its plan to ban cars from the central city by 2019 in order to reduce pollution. Norway’s capital city is set to be the first European capital city to have a comprehensive and permanent ban on cars. Oslo recently elected a new city council comprised of members of the Green Party, the Labor Party, and the Socialist Left. A lead negotiator for the Green Party explained that a car-free city will be better for pedestrians and cyclists. The city plans to build more than 37 miles of bike lanes between now and 2019. The city council also plans to increase investment in the public transportation system. Trams and buses will continue to run in the city, and exceptions to the rule will be made for cars transporting disabled people as well as goods to stores. Before the implementation of the rule in 2019, the city council plans to consult with other cities that have implemented temporary bans on cars, such as Paris, and conduct trial runs. Oslo currently has a population of approximately 600,000 with nearly 350,000 cars. Business owners in the city fear that the plan will hurt revenues. For the full story, see http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/10/19/us-norway-environment-oslo-idUKKCN0SD1GI20151019.