So, farewell, then, the Western Extension Zone. You hadn’t even reached your fourth birthday.
While the capital was on its extended Christmas break, a team of road workers took to the affluent streets of Chelsea and Kensington to remove the signage associated with the notorious Western Extension of the London Congestion Charge zone. All that’s left are dark patches of tarmac where the red and white roundels used to be.
Very few of us probably paid to enter the WEZ, but its removal marks a turning of the tide for the idea of congestion charging - or tolling existing roads, as it should be more accurately known.
Transport for London estimates a loss of annual income of some £55m as a result of removal of the WEZ (it would be interesting to know just how much of that was from fine revenue, rather than the £8 daily payment).
The opposition to Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson, who removed the zone after a local survey, predicts automotive and environmental armageddon.