The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has announced that Car Free Day will return to London in September.
27km of the city will be closed to traffic on Sunday September 22, with the Mayor and TfL working alongside 27 London boroughs to help organise community events, such as play streets, turning what are usually busy roads into a children’s play areas.
This announcement comes after the success of the city’s first-ever car-free day in September 2019. After last years events, 65% of residents who were surveyed said the day had inspired them to use their cars less.
City Hall analysis of the Breathe London air quality sensor at Bank Junction found concentrations of nitrogen dioxide were 40% lower on Car Free Day than the day before, and a temporary monitor installed by King’s College at Regent Street to measure the impact of its closure found nitrogen dioxide concentrations were 60% lower on Car Free Day compared to the day before.
Approximately 6.8 million private vehicle trips are made in London each day and according to the Mayor, 70% of these could be feasibly be made by a sustainable alternative.
Transport for London (TfL) played an important role in last years events and they have announced that this year they will once again collaborate with Open House London, the world’s largest architecture festival to give the public access to over 800 buildings and to organise walking tours and inspirational talks.
Sadiq Khan said: ‘Toxic air is a public health crisis and it is a scandal that thousands of Londoners are dying early every year as a result of exposure to air pollution.
‘I am proud that in London we are taking some of the boldest steps of any city in the world to tackle harmful emissions.
‘Last year’s Car Free day was Londons biggest yet, enabling thousands of Londoners to explore the capital by bike or on foot and encouraging them to reduce their car use.
‘I’m determined to make this year’s events bigger and better.’
Christina Calderato, head of transport strategy and planning at TfL said: ‘We’ve already seen a really positive shift in the way people travel, removing the equivalent of 2.9 million private trips from London’s roads each day, with nearly two-thirds of journeys now made by walking, cycling and public transport.
‘Engaging the public to imagine their city car-free will help us along this journey, towards our ambitious target of 80% journeys to be made by sustainable modes fo transport by 2041.’
Photo Credit – Pixabay