Driving trucks in part of NY City could cost $25 extra; state group objects

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Updated Jan 22, 2018

If your driving takes you into the busiest part of New York City, you’ll have to pay for the privilege in the future if a new plan being advanced by the state is approved by the legislature.

A new congestion pricing plan unveiled Friday calls for charging motorists, including trucks, a fee to drive in Manhattan below 60th Street. The fee for trucks: $25.34. Other motorists would pay $11.52; for-hire cars like taxies would pay $2 to $5 per ride. Fees would be charged by electronic tolling, and would be in effect during times when traffic is heaviest.

Not surprisingly, the state’s trucking association objects, saying the plan by Fix NYC, will hurt trucking companies, and increase the costs of goods being delivered.

The Trucking Association of New York Friday responded to the proposal, which is meant to ease congestion in the busiest part of the city and raise money to support the city’s troubled mass transit system. TANY said:

The recommendations included in the Fix NYC advisory panel report will not only harm hundreds of trucking companies, many of which are small business, but will also increase the costs of goods being delivered in the proposed congestion pricing zone.

Trucks are critical to the economy of New York City. Trucks deliver pharmaceuticals and medical equipment to hospitals, food and beverages to restaurants, linens and supplies to hotels, fuel to homes and businesses, building materials to construction sites, on‐line deliveries to personal residences and more. Currently, 91 percent of all goods coming into or out of New York City are carried by truck.

Truck drivers cannot use mass transit to make deliveries – they have no choice but to enter the commercial business district at the time that their customer requests. Charging a congestion fee does not cause the truck driver to shift delivery times, as it is not within their control. It will, however, increase the cost of deliveries to businesses located within the congestion zone.

The trucking industry acknowledges that congestion is a major problem and needs to be addressed. However, the recommendations in the Fix NYC report create undue burdens and costs on an industry that is critical to the economic vitality of New York City.

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We are willing to work together to find real solutions to New York’s congestion issues. We look forward to working with the governor’s office and state legislature to develop solutions that are fair and equitable to the trucking industry and its millions of New York City customers.

If the plan — like those in London and Stockholm — is approved, fees for trucks and personal vehicles could begin in 2020; the ones for taxies could be in place sooner. There would be no charge to motorists driving through Manhattan on the FDR Drive. If approved, it would be the first of its kind in the U.S. A similar plan was advanced in 2008, but failed.