French city of Lyon to impose parking rates according to car weight

LYON: The French city of Lyon has unveiled a unique progressive parking pricing policy.

To encourage the use of less-polluting vehicles, parking rates will vary according to the weight and type of car, with special discounts for electric models. Heavier, more polluting vehicles will be subject to higher rates.

Owners of electric vehicles will benefit from a reduced rate of €15 (RM77) per month, with the exception of particularly bulky and heavy vehicles (over 2,100kg).

This will also apply to owners of combustion-powered cars weighing less than 1,000 kg, as well as large families and residents on low incomes, regardless of the type of car they have.

According to the mayor's office, almost one out of every two households in Lyon should be eligible for this rate.

Meanwhile the "standard" rate of €30 (RM154) per month will apply to internal combustion vehicles weighing between 1,000kg and 1,525kg, as well as plug-in hybrids weighing up to 1,900kg.

The largest and most high-impact vehicles will have to pay a higher rate of €45 (RM231) per month. This applies to internal combustion vehicles over 1,525kg, rechargeable hybrids over 1,900kg and electric models over 2,100kg.

A new hourly rate for visitors has also been introduced, again favouring light electric vehicles over heavier ones (€3 or RM15.40 per hour for premium vehicles and €1 or RM5.13 for reduced-rate vehicles).

Meanwhile, the municipal authorities are also announcing new preferential rates for professionals, with various annual subscription formulas. Once again, in this equation, electric vehicles will benefit from lower rates.

This new progressive parking fee structure is due to be implemented in June 2024. In the meantime, a simulator will be available on the city's website, so that residents can find out what rate applies to their vehicle.

Other municipalities that have introduced a pay-by-weight parking scheme include the Montreal borough of Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie in Canada and Islington in London, UK, while some US cities charge owners of heavy vehicles more in registration fees.

Meanwhile, France's capital city is also looking to minimise the circulation of large, high-impact, polluting vehicles.

Paris is holding a referendum on Feb 4 for citizens to vote on whether differentiated parking rates for the biggest and most high-impact SUVs should be carried out.
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