London’s Success with Congestion Charging

Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 3:00pm

About the Event

London had a problem: vehicles in the city center moved at a slower speed than Queen Victoria did in a horse and carriage, says Dave Wetzel, vice chair of Transport for London. The mayor’s response in 2003 was to implement a congestion policy that charges vehicles five pounds (roughly nine dollars) to enter central London. Designed to make a scarce resource—road space—function more efficiently, the policy is working even better than expected: congestion is down 32 percent to date. In his speech, Wetzel described London’s experience with congestion charging, the technology used, and lessons for other cities.

For more about London’s congestion charging program, visit


Dave Wetzel is vice chair of Transport for London, the integrated body responsible for the capital's transport system. It is accountable for both the planning and delivery of transport facilities.

Wetzel's career has included working as a London bus conductor, driver, and inspector, as a manager for Initial Services operating a small fleet of vans in East London, and as editor of Civil Aviation News (an airport workers' monthly paper).

He has also been chair of the Greater London Council's Transport Committee, leader of Hounslow Council, director of London DaRT (Dial-a-Ride and Taxicard Users), management committee member of Capital Transport Campaign and Hounslow Community Transport, president of London University's Transport Studies Society, and vice chair of a local chamber of commerce in Cornwall.

He is a fellow of both the Royal Society of Arts and the Institute of Logistics and Transport.