New York City could become the first US city to implement a congestion fee for motorists entering its busiest areas.
The Big Apple’s new plan, laid out Wednesday by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, could see drivers charged as much as $23 to enter Manhattan’s central business district.
A study released with the plan projected a reduction in the number of cars entering Manhattan by 15% to 20%, which local officials hope will de-clog streets and boost public-transit ridership.
Local drivers in the city can expect to encounter the $23 fee, while the cost of a round trip by car from areas like Princeton, New Jersey, could be as much as $120.
The new fees, which would go into effect as early as 2023, are projected to bring in $1 billion a year for MTA, which runs the city’s public transit system and faces a financial crisis as ridership continues to lag behind pre-pandemic levels.
Other major global cities such as Singapore and London already have congestion pricing policies to stamp down traffic.
The city wants to charge a daily variable toll for vehicles entering or remaining within the central business district, defined as between 60th Street in midtown Manhattan and Battery Park on Manhattan’s southern tip.