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Congestion pricing also increased profits for downtown businesses, by up to a third in the studies (equivalent to the reduction in cars), because in a constrained road network fewer cars always equals more people, and more people equals more Dollars in the affected area. If NYC gets the chance to demonstrate this, then surely the word would spread via. merchant groups, etc. Surely some people will begin to understand this concept when they see their profits increase.

For some reason business groups always come down to insisting that fewer cars means lost business, but this is false.
People spend money, not cars. Removing cars from a constrained road system always increases the efficiency of that system, meaning the ability to move people at the expense of carrying fewer cars.

Fewer cars = more people = more dollars for downtown business, less congestion, less pollution, fewer accidents, less noise, etc. etc....

Oh, and most of the tourists I see are on tour buses, or rental bikes, or Segways, or standing to left on the metro escalator.
The average novice Midwestern tourist is absolutely terrified to drive a car in downtown DC. If anything, the reduction in cars would make for a happier experience for any tourists who would still adamantly insist on driving down to the mall.

I lived in London the year the congestion charge took effect, and I literally saw the reduction in transit occur before my eyes. I have high hopes for NYC implementing a congestion charge...they are far more progressive than DC, and I don't know if it can ever happen here. I hope I am wrong.

by "reduction in transit" I meant "reduction in traffic". Haven't had morning coffee yet.

This commentary is particularly well written, and structured.

The upshot of the comments are predictable -- albeit sad. The attitudes and content that background the Representatives comments are what stand out as particularly distressing.

This culture breeds arrogance, particularly in males...Rep. Wolf is literally an idiot, much like Pres. Bush. The problem is that neither are insincere, and they, by all indications, really do want to make the country a better place.

The problem is they are spectacularly stunted by their lack of relevant content and experience. This prevents the development of the conceptual resources necessary to make better sense of the world.

And so on they go making these proclamations that are grounded by nothing but good will, and are laughable on their face!

Woe is us...and if you bicycle as a lifestyle choice, move to Europe.

It's also possible that Rep. Wolf thinks he is looking out for his constituents who can be expected to have a higher tax to benefit ratio then people in DC, Alexandria or other close in areas.

AAA is the worst. Their lobbying power makes them one of the biggest impediments to sensible transit.

One counter to Wolf's argument is that tourists are already conditioned to avoid rush hour on transit by the 9:30 start of the all-day Metro pass. This didn't cripple the tourist industry. Doing the same thing during rush hour to autos would not be revolutionary for the tourists, but more likely for all the government and law firm workers used to driving in from the burbs to their tax-subsidized parking. Those are Wolf's constituents that he is "protecting."

A congestion tax at peak rush hour is long overdue. We don't have a shortage of roads and bridges in the DC area -- it's that everyone tries to go into the city at 8:30am and everyone tries to leave the city at 5pm. Why not give people (and their bosses) a real, economic incentive to promote off-peak commuting or even telecommuting?

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