THE FIRST ever Zero Emission Zone pilot is set to launch in Oxford next year.

This will mean polluting vehicles will be charged if driven in key city centre streets between the hours of 7am-7pm, every day.

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Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council have confirmed today the new timeline after working together to resolve technical complexities in the online systems supporting the scheme.

The scheme will launch in February 2022, however, the exact date of the pilot will be confirmed later this year.

The refreshed dates will avoid any disruption that the pilot scheme may have caused during businesses run up to Christmas.

The locations include:

  • Cornmarket Street
  • Queen Street
  • Bonn Square
  • New Inn Hall Street
  • St Michael's Street
  • Ship Street

The daily charges will be:

  • Zero-emission vehicles (0g/km CO2): £0
  • Ultra-low emission vehicles (less than 75g/km CO2): £2 per day from February 2022, rising to £4 per day from August 2025
  • Clean Air Zone compliant or Low emission vehicles: £4 per day from February 2022, rising to £8 per day from August 2025
  • Motorcycles and mopeds: £2 per day from February 2022, rising to £4 per day from August 2025
  • Vehicles not meeting the above standards: £10 per day from February 2022, rising to £20 from August 2025

Councillor Tom Hayes, Cabinet Member for Green Transport and Zero Carbon Oxford, said: “If you’ve been to the shops recently and wondered why some shelves look bare, you’ll understand why we’re launching the Zero Emission Zone early next year.

"With businesses being hit by shortages and COVID’s lingering effects, we want to give Oxford’s economy a helping hand to have the best Christmas possible.

"With our IT problems sorted, the Zero Emission Zone pilot can launch in February 2022 in a way which we can truly learn from. That way we can move to extending the ZEZ across the city centre, so that we can improve the air and health of people.”

Councillor Duncan Enright, Oxfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for Travel and Development Strategy, said: "Poor air quality in our beloved city is a major concern, and alongside the climate emergency this means we need to act.

"The Oxford Zero Emission Zone pilot is an important step in tackling these problems, and will make our city centre a cleaner, healthier and more attractive place to live, work, visit and shop.

"It will also mean there is more space for those on foot and bikes, as well as our vital bus and taxi services. 

"We will be working in coming months with residents and businesses to adapt to this change, and plan next steps to make Oxford a cleaner, lovelier and more sustainable city, fit for the future."