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Achieving political acceptability for new transport infrastructure in congested urban regions

  • Westin , Jonas



  • Basck, Pierre

    (LET, Université de Lyon)

  • Franklin, Joel P.



  • Proost , Stef

    (CES, KU Leuven)

  • Raux , Charles

    (LET, Université de Lyon)

The paper analyzes the political acceptability of policies targeted at relieving urban congestion. The paper combines a stylized model of an urban transport network with a somewhat more detailed model of the political process that incorporates interactions between voters, special interest groups and politicians to explore the possibilities to reach political acceptability for efficient transport policies. In a case study of a proposed bypass in Lyon, France, the paper compares a set of potential policies in terms of efficiency, equity and political acceptability. A possible explanation for the difficulty of achieving political support for efficient transport policies is that since urban road pricing policies are characterized by conflicting interest, the political decision making process must balance different interests against each other to reach an efficient outcome. The analysis suggest that the difficulty to achieve political support for efficient road pricing policies is not a lack of political acceptability; instead the difficulty arises because of low political feasibility for efficient transport pricing since non-efficient transport policies are seen as more attractive to the decision makers.

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Paper provided by CTS - Centre for Transport Studies Stockholm (KTH and VTI) in its series Working papers in Transport Economics with number 2012:19.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: 02 Oct 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:ctswps:2012_019
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Centrum för Transportstudier (CTS), Teknikringen 10, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden

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  1. McQuaid, Ronald & Grieco, Margaret, 2005. "Edinburgh and the politics of congestion charging: Negotiating road user charging with affected publics," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 12(5), pages 475-476, September.
  2. Aidt, Toke S., 1998. "Political internalization of economic externalities and environmental policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 1-16, July.
  3. Inge Mayeres & Stef Proost, 1998. "Marginal Tax Reform, Externalities and Income Distribution," Working Papers Department of Economics ces9832, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business, Department of Economics.
  4. Borger Bruno De & Dunkerley Fay & Proost Stef, 2008. "The Interaction between Tolls and Capacity Investment in Serial and Parallel Transport Networks," Review of Network Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-23, March.
  5. Tom Rye & Martin Gaunt & Stephen Ison, 2008. "Edinburgh's Congestion Charging Plans: An Analysis of Reasons for Non-Implementation," Transportation Planning and Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(6), pages 641-661, March.
  6. DE BORGER, Bruno & PROOST, Stef, 2010. "A political economy model of road pricing," Working Papers 2010014, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
  7. Harsman, Bjorn & Quigley, John M., 2010. "Political and Public Acceptability of Congestion Pricing: Ideology and Self Interest," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt14n0h1nv, University of California Transportation Center.
  8. DE BORGER, Bruno & PROOST, Stef & VAN DENDER, Kurt, 2004. "Congestion and tax competition in a parallel network," CORE Discussion Papers 2004018, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  9. Russo, Antonio, 2013. "Voting on road congestion policy," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(5), pages 707-724.
  10. DE BORGER, Bruno & DUNKERLEY, Fay & PROOST, Stef, 2006. "Strategic investment and pricing decisions in a congested transport corridor," Working Papers 2006021, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
  11. Charles Raux & Stéphanie Souche & Yves Croissant, 2009. "How fair is pricing perceived to be? An empirical study," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 139(1), pages 227-240, April.
  12. Björn Hårsman & John M. Quigley, 2010. "Political and public acceptability of congestion pricing: Ideology and self-interest," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(4), pages 854-874.
  13. Small, Kenneth A. & Yan, Jia, 2001. "The Value of "Value Pricing" of Roads: Second-Best Pricing and Product Differentiation," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt9569k1sz, University of California Transportation Center.
  14. Schaller, Bruce, 2010. "New York City's congestion pricing experience and implications for road pricing acceptance in the United States," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 266-273, August.
  15. Jonas Westin & Joel P. Franklin & Sofia Grahn-Voorneveld & Stef Proost, 2012. "How to decide on regional infrastructure to achieve intra-regional acceptability and inter-regional consensus?," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 91(3), pages 617-643, 08.
  16. Stephen Ison & Tom Rye, 2005. "Implementing Road User Charging: The Lessons Learnt from Hong Kong, Cambridge and Central London," Transport Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(4), pages 451-465, October.
  17. David Levinson, 2001. "Why States Toll: An Empirical Model of Finance Choice," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, University of Bath, vol. 35(2), pages 223-237, May.
  18. Verhoef, Erik & Nijkamp, Peter & Rietveld, Piet, 1996. "Second-Best Congestion Pricing: The Case of an Untolled Alternative," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 279-302, November.
  19. David A. Hensher & John M. Rose & Andrew T. Collins, 2013. "Understanding Buy-in for Risky Prospects: Incorporating Degree of Belief into the ex-ante Assessment of Support for Alternative Road Pricing Schemes," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, University of Bath, vol. 47(3), pages 453-473, September.
  20. Jens Schade & Bernhard Schlag, 2000. "Acceptability of Urban Transport Pricing," Research Reports 72, Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT).
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