Car Ban on Budapest's Chain Bridge Helps Environment, But Will it Remain?

  • 3 May 2023 7:18 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Car Ban on Budapest's Chain Bridge Helps Environment, But Will it Remain?
The Budapest Transport Centre (BKK) has proposed that current traffic rules barring private cars from Budapest’s landmark Chain Bridge should be kept, BKK head Katalin Walter told a press conference.

The ban was introduced for a trial period after the bridge’s reconstruction, and BKK has concluded that it should be made permanent, Walter said.

Since December last year, vehicles of public transport, taxis, motorbikes and bicycles have been using the bridge, while pedestrians will be allowed to cross when the reconstruction is fully completed. At the press conference, Samu Balogh, the cabinet chief of the mayor, noted that the final decision will be made “at the first residents’ meeting” of the city.

Providing figures of an analysis of traffic since the partial reopening of the bridge in mid-December last year, Ádám Bodor, BKK’s mobility development director, noted a 54% drop in travel time for buses to cross the bridge from the Pest side to the Buda side during peak hours.

Bodor said current traffic rules have attracted cyclers to use the bridge more frequently, with their numbers doubling to 1,958 per day in April compared with 2019.

“As a result of this new model, the city’s carbon dioxide emissions have dropped by 29 tonnes per day,” said Bodor, adding that emissions in the area around the bridge had dropped by one tonne per day.

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