Diesel car drivers would be unable to use Cabot Circus car park under proposed ban

November 04 2019
Diesel car drivers would be unable to use Cabot Circus car park under proposed ban

BRISTOL'S planned diesel ban would see drivers having to leave the inbound M32 at the Easton junction.

The proposed ban on private diesel vehicles in the centre of the city covers Broadmead, the Harbourside and Redcliffe.

But the latest council map shows that it also now extends for the length of Newfoundland Street to junction 3 of the M32 – the roundabout where it meets Easton Way and Lower Ashley Road.

Under the plans, due before the city council's cabinet tomorrow, when the M32 ends diesel car drivers would not be allowed to drive on the A4032 to access the Cabot Circus car park, Bond Street or Temple Way. Instead they would have to join the traffic heading through either Easton or St Paul's, both densely-populated areas.  Houlton Street, the side access to Cabot Circus car park, is also in the area covered by the ban on the latest map.

Diesel cars would also be banned from the A420 Old Market Street, inside the Midland Road/Lawford Street junction.

Earlier versions of the diesel car ban map produced during this summer's consultations did not include Newfoundland Street in the ban zone – it was also excluded from the clean air zone, which commercial diesel vehicles would have to pay to enter.

The diesel ban would affect all privately-owned diesel vehicles in the shaded area, below, and run between 7am and 3pm, seven days a week.

Buses, taxis and emergency service vehicles would be exempt.

diesel ban only

A wider clean air zone, covering inner city areas including Easton, St Philip's Marsh and the Dings, below, would see charges for polluting commercial vehicles. Taxis, private-hire vehicles and light goods vehicles would be charged £9 per day to enter the clean air zone while buses, coaches and heavy lorries would pay a fee of £100 a day.

The areas covered by the diesel car ban also extend away from the centre of the city on other major commuter routes.

On the A4 Bath Road it will start between the Three Lamps junction and the Bath Bridge roundabout before Temple Meads, which means diesel drivers will not be able to skirt around the area on York Road, from which they are also banned.

Approaching from the A4 Portway, the ban will start at the junction with Bridge Valley Road, where the A4 becomes Hotwell Road before passing under the Clifton Suspension Bridge.

The area of the ban also includes the entire length of Bridge Valley Road itself.

At Ashton Gate the area covered by the ban will start by Bristol City's stadium, at the junction of Winterstoke Road and Wedlock Way, and where the A370 joins Ashton Road next to Greville Smyth Park, which means private diesel cars will not be able to cross the Cumberland Basin.

The council has been told to submit its final clean air plans to the government in February 2020 and implement them in March 2021.

clean air zone

In 2017 it was ordered, along with 24 other local authorities, to reduce its toxic levels of nitrogen dioxide so they fall within legal limits as quickly as possible.

The RAC said the proposed diesel car ban would have an “unprecedented” impact on drivers of diesel vehicles.

Head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: “Major routes into, out of, and even around the city – like Temple Way and Brunel Way – would become out of bounds, with diesel vehicles forced onto other roads, which risks causing congestion problems where they don’t exist at the moment.”

Diesel car drivers would find it more difficult to get around the city, and many of them will find it too costly to switch to a cleaner vehicle, he said.

Mr Lyes said that many diesel car owners are locked into finance packages with expensive contract exit penalties.

The devil will be in the detail, but we are concerned that a scrappage scheme would not prove effective in getting people into cleaner cars, since such schemes are designed to get people into brand-new – and still more costly – vehicles,” he added.