San Francisco considers traffic congestion fee that would only apply to ‘rich’ drivers making more than $46,000 a year

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The Daily Mail:

  • San Francisco is considering a congestion pricing plan to relieve traffic
  • The plan would charge a fee for those entering a certain zone in downtown
  • The $6.50 fee would be discounted for those making under $100,000
  • No fee would be charged to those making less than $46,000, the plan proposes

San Francisco is considering a congestion pricing plan that would charge motorists for entering the busy downtown core — but only if they make more than $46,000 per year.

The San Francisco County Transportation Authority is leading the city’s study on the proposal to charge a fee to any drivers who enter the downtown zone, details of which were reported by the San Francisco Chronicle.

London has used a similar congestion charge scheme for nearly a decade, but it does not include an income threshold. New York City is currently considering a daily charge of $14 for motorists who enter certain parts of Manhattan.

Drivers would pay the fee for entering downtown on weekdays between 6am and 9am, and 3.30pm to 6.30pm.

Ride hailing vehicles such as Uber and Lyft would likely be charged per trip for entering the zone, and pass the fees along to customers.

The agency is considering two options for the pricing zone, one encompassing the immediate downtown area and the other expanded to include North Beach, Russian Hill and Fisherman’s Wharf to the north, and Mission Bay to the south.

Any congestion pricing pricing plan is still three to five years from potentially being implemented, an agency spokesperson told the Chronicle.

San Francisco has been considering congestion pricing since as early as 2004, but the discussion became more urgent as gridlocked spiraled out of control prior to the pandemic.

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