UVAR Project Pipeline

There are over 700 Urban Vehicle Access Regulations (UVARs), also known as Access Regulations, and include measures such as Low Emission Zones (LEZs), Zero Emission Zones (ZEZs), Congestion ChargesUrban Road Tolls, Limited Traffic Zones (LTZs), Superblocks

The information is constantly changing, and the Urban Access Regulations website, provided by CLARS and Sadler Consultants GmbH, offers full updated information on European UVARs by sharing individual cities’ cases and overview and examples of what schemes currently exist.

Below, find an overview of different types of UVAR:

  • Low Emission Zones (LEZ)
    • Most are area-based; some are specific streets, occasionally motorways
    • Can be Sticker, Camera, or sometimes manual without Sticker
    • Can affect different vehicle types, sometimes trip types (e.g. delivery)
  • Urban Toll Schemes / Congestion Charging (CS)
    • Usually area based, but some individual streets / bridges, or point-based
    • Camera enforced, where you need to pay beforehand (sometimes up to the end of the day), online, by phone or sometimes transponder or by a payment booth at the entry of the road / bridge
  • Emergency Air Pollution Schemes
    • Cover a certain area, whole municipality or region
    • Either on predicted air pollution, or after a certain number of days with high pollution
    • The action required can include speed limits, emission standards, vehicle bans
  • Zero Emission Zones (ZEZ) are increasing in numbers
    • Requiring vehicles with battery electric or hydrogen vehicles, as well as cycles and feet. Some allow plug in hybrid vehicles. Some ZEZs can be traffic-free, or larger pedestrian / cycle areas
  • Other Access Regulations can be many and varied
    • Limited Traffic Zones, where only certain vehicles are allowed in, often requiring permits
    • Through traffic bans, often for heavy vehicles
    • Restrictions for vehicles of particular weights, vehicle or trip types
    • Requirements for particular vehicles (e.g. safety wing mirrors)
    • Access / delivery time windows (sometimes with permit requirements)
    • Coordinated Parking Schemes and pedestrian zones
    • ‘Superblocks’, where traffic, and particularly through traffic is reduced by permit entry and one-way systems
  • Combined Schemes are increasing
    • For example schemes combining emissions requirements with permit requirements, parking costs/permission, delivery windows, tolls, and more
  • Smaller Regulations / Restrictions are numerous
    • Many small towns have through traffic bans, town (shopping / historical) centre pedestrian zones, individual streets that do not / cannot take certain vehicles, traffic calmed areas such as ‘home zones’ or 20 kph streets/areas. Many of these restrictions are notified simply by a road sign, which needs to be obeyed
    • Increasingly local regulations such as ‘school streets’ where a street or part of a street outside a school (or other sensitive area), which during the start and end of the school day is reserved for pedestrians/cyclists and most vehicular traffic is prohibited.

The European UVARs use many different technologies listed below, with some examples of cities that use them:

The German LEZs, such as Berlin, French in Paris, or Spanish in Barcelona

Ljubljana’s pedestrian zone/LTZ or through spatial interventions, and changing the road layout, such as in Vitoria-Gasteiz’s Superblocks or Gent’s Circulation Plan

    • RFID, such as Milan or the Norwegian tolling, as in Oslo
    • Dedicated short range communication as in Singapore
    • Global Navigation Satellite System-based tolling will soon be used in Singapore.

Being trialled in Helmond through ReVeAL, and will be required on new EU vehicles

Geofencing for ensuring plug-in hybrid work on electric mode, or controlling speed has been trialled in London through ReVeAL, as well as through the CLOSER project