Affected area and residual period of London Congestion Charging scheme on road safety

Hongliang Ding, N. N. Sze, Haojie Li, Yanyong Guo

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The London congestion charging (LCC) scheme was first introduced in 2003. It did not only help alleviate traffic congestion and reduce vehicle emissions, but also had favorable safety effect. Western Extension of LCC was applied in 2007, but then removed in 2011. It was suggested that adjacent areas of the congestion charging zone could also be benefited. As well, the benefits would not disappear immediately after the removal of congestion charging scheme, which is known as residual effect. This paper attempts to examine the affected area and residual period of the safety benefits by the LCC scheme using the traffic and crash data from 352 Middle Super Output Areas (MSOAs) of London, with which the original LCC scheme was imposed in 24 MSOAs (‘treatment’ units for Analysis I), the Western Extension scheme was imposed in 27 MSOAs (‘treatment’ units for Analysis II), and no congestion charging was implemented at all in 301 MSOAs (‘control’ units for both Analysis I and II). Factors including traffic flow, land use, built environment and population demographics are considered. To eliminate the bias by the selection of treatment and control groups, Propensity Score matching (PSM) method is applied. Results indicate that favorable effect on safety is prevalent in the 1.5 km buffer area of LCC zone. On the other hand, for the residual effect, considerable crash reduction could be found in the first year after the removal of Western Extension of LCC. However, no evidence could be established for significant crash reduction in the second and third years after the removal. Findings should be indicative to the transport management policy that could improve the road safety in the Greater London in the long run.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-128
Number of pages9
JournalTransport Policy
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021


  • Affected area
  • London congestion charging (LCC) scheme
  • Residual effect
  • Traffic safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Transportation


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