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When are we really going to start playing the long game of car usage?

Scotland is considering whether to empower councils to charge jobs for every parking space it has for employees, with the fee being passed on to workers and visitors to reduce traffic.  Image: Lisa Ferguson.Scotland is considering whether to empower councils to charge jobs for every parking space it has for employees, with the fee being passed on to workers and visitors to reduce traffic. Image: Lisa Ferguson.

Many still believe that the road ahead is open and endless when it comes to car use – but we know that it really can’t be the case for much longer.

There is no doubt that cars offer comfort and convenience. If public transport is almost a door-to-door experience in some cities like London, there is little need or need for a car, but that is far from everywhere.

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When we’re running late, the car seems like the only option. When it’s cold and wet, they bring us shelter. When the kids are crying and life is in chaos, they give us a little privacy while we pursue our goals. The bus, it seems, doesn’t offer any of that.

But our everyday car overuse is hard to deny. It’s a huge relief to think about jumping in the car and hitting the streets for the weekend, but we know that on the way to work we often get straight into a queue, the majority of which is just one Soul transported.

Shifting gears is inevitable, however, as the Scottish government works to reduce traffic by 20 percent by 2030.

Transport Minister Graeme Dey has described the councils’ powers to introduce parking permits in the workplace as a “key tool” to curb car use and Edinburgh and Glasgow are among those considering them.

Employers would pay an annual fee for each parking space used, which can be passed on to employees and visitors, and the money is then earmarked for public transport, cycling and walking.

Nottingham, the only UK city to have implemented such a system, has shown that the system has advantages. There the city is charging £ 428 for an area which in turn has raised tens of millions of pounds for improvements to trams, rails and buses.

Of course, there will be exceptions, and rightly so, for people with reduced mobility, for example, and our companies must have all the support they can to make them work.

But if now is not the time to seriously consider alternative modes of transport, when will it? Should it really only be up to the next generation, our children, to leave the car keys at home?

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