DHF calls for Ulez alternative

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The Door and Hardware Federation (DHF) has called for London’s mayor to reconsider extending London’s ultra-low emission zone (Ulez) from 29 August, in order to prioritise smaller businesses within the construction industry. The high court dismissed a challenge to the Ulez expansion this morning (see this Guardian report).

Patricia Sowsbery-Stevens, commercial director for the Door and Hardware Federation

“Whilst we fully support the need to cut emissions and protect the environment, we urge the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to consider alternative ways to limit the impact that Ulez will have on businesses in the construction industry, including that he reassess this extension,” said Patricia Sowsbery-Stevens, the DHF’s commercial director.

“The planned extension will seriously impact the income of construction businesses, and at a time when inflation remains very high and customers are delaying or cancelling projects due to higher costs and limited budgets, this will make the commercial environment even more challenging,” she continued.

“Ulez will increase the cost of construction workers using vans to go to work. It could also cause construction workers to work longer hours to limit the number of times they need to travel into the centre, and could cause construction companies to lose work due to the need to increase their prices to cover this additional cost on top of the cost of living crisis and increasing transport costs. It may potentially undermine the mayor of London’s plea for construction workers to work in the capital, to help improve the city’s housing stock.

“DHF cannot stress enough the considerable impact not just on construction businesses but on all businesses that have a legitimate reason to travel into the Ultra Low Emission Zone. We hope that alternative options will be considered that prioritise small-to-medium-sized businesses operating in the capital.”

The Ulez operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and on all but one day of the year (25 December). If a vehicle does not the Ulez emissions standards, its driver is due to pay a £12.50 daily charge to drive within the zone. Currently, this applies to cars, motorcycles, vans, minibuses and specialist vehicles (up to and including 3.5 tonnes). Lorries, vans or specialist heavy vehicles (all over 3.5 tonnes) and buses, minibuses and coaches (all over 5 tonnes) do not need to pay the ULEZ charge.

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