The construction sector, congestion charging and exemptions

Stephen Ison (Department of Civil and Building Engineering, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK)
Andrew Dainty (Department of Civil and Building Engineering, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK)
Stuart Wall (Ashcroft International Business School, Anglia Polytechnic University, Cambridge, UK)

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management

ISSN: 0969-9988

Publication date: 1 December 2004


In February 2003, London became the first city in the UK to introduce a comprehensive congestion‐charging scheme, whereby road users are charged on a per day basis in order to use the road space. In response to concerted lobbying, a number of sectors and user groups have been granted exemptions from the charge. This paper explores the likely effect of congestion charging and the case for exempting construction delivery vehicles. A case study of a live construction project currently being undertaken in the city of London is used to illustrate the impact of the scheme. Based on this case example, it would seem that the impact of the scheme on construction companies has been fairly benign to date, but concerns relate to the longer term effect of charging on the future regeneration of city centres. Furthermore, it would appear that there are lessons to be learnt from the industry's apparent inability to bring to bear its collective weight to lobby for exemptions, which leaves it vulnerable to similar schemes under consideration in other cities both nationally and internationally.



Ison, S., Dainty, A. and Wall, S. (2004), "The construction sector, congestion charging and exemptions", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 11 No. 6, pp. 386-394.

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Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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