German environmental aid calls for more expensive parking for residents

At least 360 euros per year

German environmental aid calls for more expensive parking fees for residents

Berlin.Those who park close to home will soon have to pay a lot more, at least if German environmental aid is successful. The association is asking federal states and cities to raise national residents’ parking rates to at least € 360 per year. In many places, huge SUVs are still likely to offer public space for pennies a day.

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Many states and municipalities have slowed down “reasonable rates” for resident parking – and with it the turnaround in mobility. The rates must be so high that people who are not dependent on their car question the ownership of the car.

DUH: still too cheap compared to bus and train tickets

In many residential areas, especially in large cities, parking is only allowed with a resident parking permit. Residents should be able to walk to their homes.

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German environmental aid: parking spaces for residents should become more expensive

Those who park close to home will soon have to pay a lot more, at least if German environmental aid is successful.

Compared to the cost of bus and train tickets, a fee for resident parking permits of at least € 360 per year is still low, says the German Environmental Aid (DUH). An application for environmental aid revealed that only five states have allowed local authorities to charge “reasonable rates” for resident parking permits. The results were made available to the German news agency. Municipalities like Erfurt, Cologne, and Stuttgart would have the option of charging higher fees, but they wouldn’t anyway, according to the DUH.

Praise to Freiburg and Tübingen

Environmental aid sees the regulations of Freiburg and Tübingen as reference models. In Freiburg there is an average rate of 360 euros per year. According to the DUH, € 480 per year is owed for particularly large SUVs and pickups. Tübingen requires a 50 percent higher annual fee for particularly heavy “urban tanks” compared to small cars, ie 180 euros.

In mid-2020, the Bundestag and Bundesrat overturned a national maximum limit for parking permits for residents of € 30.70 per year: since then, states and municipalities have been able to regulate tariffs for urban districts with a significant lack of parking. State governments can enact rate plans for this purpose.

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“Public space is increasingly contested”

“Public space is scarce and increasingly contested,” says Federal CEO of DUH Jürgen Resch. “Every year the number of cars registered in Germany increases by half a million. At the same time, the registered cars become longer, wider and heavier. However, residents in most cities can deliver public spaces in their huge SUVs and pickups for just 8 cents a day. “

According to the DUH, this is only a fraction of the taxes levied in many cities abroad. The think tank Agora Verkehrswende also believes that parking spaces for residents of Germany are too cheap. “The rates reflect neither the cost nor the actual benefit,” says a document presented in January. A parking permit for Stockholm residents, for example, costs around 1,300 euros per year.

The DUH distributes green, yellow and red cards to federal states

German environmental aid has distributed green, yellow and red badges to federal states. Five federal states have received a green card: in Baden-Württemberg, Hesse, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia and Thuringia, cities can charge reasonable rates for residents’ parking. Bavaria, Brandenburg, Saxony-Anhalt and Schleswig-Holstein have received a red card: these states have not yet decided whether they want to give their municipalities more options.

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According to the DUH, all other federal states – Berlin, Bremen, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saarland and Saxony – have stated that they are planning new parking fee regulation, but are currently still discussing the project. There was a yellow card from environmental aid. The regulation has already been adjusted in Hamburg, but the annual fee of € 65 still has no guiding effect. Therefore, Hamburg also received a yellow card from environmental aid.

In the capital Berlin, the coalition agreement between the SPD, the Greens and the Left provides that by 2023, at the latest, the parking fee for residents should rise to 10 euros per month. A resident parking permit currently costs EUR 10.20 per year.

RND / dpa

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