The Green party wants to turn London into one travel zone

Bethan McKernan@mck_beth
Monday 04 January 2016 14:30

As annual public transport fare rises go into effect across the country this week, the Green Party has called for abolishing fare zones in the capital altogether.

The '#fairfares' campaign would reduce London to just four travel zones from 2017, and introduce completely flat fares by 2025.

As Londonist points out, someone living in the suburbs of Zone 6 currently pays at least £844 a year more than someone who lives in Zone 3 to get to the same destination in central London.

Since the housing crisis and soaring rents have pushed many lower income earners into outer London, this unduly penalises low-income people who can't afford to live closer to the city.

Sian Berry, the Green Party's candidate for London's mayoral election later this month, said in a statement:

Everyone's journey to work should cost the same. Flattening the zone structure is the most revolutionary idea for London's fares since the introduction of the travel card in 1983.

A flat fare would also work out as fairer for part time workers who don't need monthly travel cards, which are cheaper than single fares, and would encourage more people to use public transport rather than their cars, Berry said.

The party has also proposed a 'one stop' ticket which would eliminate the extra charges incurred by switching modes of transport, ie from tube to bus, lowering the pay-as-you-go cap and introducing a one-hour bus pass as part of their London mayoral election manifesto.

The party estimates that the plans would cut Transport for London's (TfL) income by around 10 per cent, the burden of which will be shifted from fare payers (currently 40 per cent of TfL's income) to an altered congestion charge system for car users.

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