According to Charles Komanoff, an expert on congestion pricing modeling and consultant to the taxi industry, “For-hire vehicles… shouldn’t be an afterthought to congestion pricing. They deserve their own policy lane. Since they’re closely regulated, we can devise a granular congestion charge that is, frankly, brilliant.”

Komanoff’s five-part plan includes the following:

  • Repeal the MTA surcharges that since early 2019 have collected $2.50 per taxi ride ($2.75 for Ubers and Lyfts) that touches the Manhattan taxi zone (everything south of 96th Street).
  • Determine how much money the surcharges have been depositing with the MTA and make that the new scheme’s revenue floor.
  • Charge each FHV passenger trip a set rate – more in daytime, less at night – for every minute the vehicle is traveling in the Manhattan taxi zone. Set the rate so the total annual revenue equals that from the surcharge.
  • No entry fee for FHVs, since that function will be performed by part 3.
  • Additionally charge Uber and Lyft for each minute their vehicles are anywhere in the zone without a passenger, to discourage vehicle stockpiling in the congested CBD.

“Charging the for-hires for each passenger-minute in the Manhattan taxi zone is quintessential congestion pricing – and more effective against Manhattan congestion than the MTA’s one-size-fits-all FHV surcharge,” noted Komanoff.

Komanoff has also suggested that ALL private vehicles be charged a “by-the-minute” surcharge fee when they are in NYC’s Central Business District.

Source: Streets Blog NYC

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