Manchester

Manchester workplace parking levy considered by council

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Image caption The proposals also include public transport improvements and better cycling infrastructure

A workplace parking levy is one of a number of "solutions" being considered to reduce air pollution in Manchester.

A similar levy in Nottingham will see firms charged more than £400 a year but Manchester is yet to decide who will pay if draft proposals are agreed.

Councils have been asked by the government for proposals to tackle air pollution in towns and cities by March.

Backing the idea of a levy, Campaign for Better Transport (CfBT) said it would help tackle a "pollution crisis".

The UK has struggled to keep within EU limits on some pollutants, particularly nitrogen dioxide (NO2), which is produced by diesel engines and is linked to a range of respiratory diseases, including asthma.

Only six of the 43 regions of the UK are within NO2 limits.

'No plans'

The possible measures to combat the issue put forward for consideration by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) also included:

  • Incentives for greener vehicle use
  • Switching public transport and freight to cleaner fuels
  • Improved cycling and walking infrastructure
  • Public transport improvements

Helen Smith from TfGM said: "No decisions have been taken on how best to clean up the air we all breathe in the shortest possible time."

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, who is working on a separate congestion plan, said he had "no plans" for the levy.

CfBT said a similar workplace parking charge in Nottingham had "cut congestion, improved air quality and funded much better public transport".

Nottingham introduced the levy in 2012 and the annual charge for employers with more than 10 staff parking spaces will be £402 in the next financial year.

Manchester City Council's executive committee is due to consider the proposals on 7 February.

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