Beijing hikes parking fees to ease traffic congestion

14:32, April 01, 2011      

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Beijing Friday started charging higher parking fees in non-residential areas in the latest bid to get cars off the city's overcrowded roads.

The fee is now 10 yuan (1.5 U.S. dollar) for the first hour and after that 15 yuan per hour for a roadside car park inside the third-ring road and four neighboring business areas between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.

The road side parking fee in other areas inside the fifth-ring road has been raised to 6 yuan for the first hour and after that 9 yuan per hour.

Outside the fifth-ring road, road side parking costs 2 yuan for the first hour and 3 yuan per hour for the following hours, according to the municipal commission of development and reform.

Before the hikes, roadside parking fees were 10 yuan per hour in 13 major downtown business and shopping areas and 2 yuan per hour in other areas.

Fees at open and underground parking lots have also been raised.

Among other efforts to tackle traffic woes, the city has restricted vehicle purchases by allowing only 240,000 cars to be registered this year via a lottery system, about a third of the number in 2010.

Beijing had 4.8 million vehicles by the end of last year.

Source: Xinhua
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