If tax credits and rebates aren’t enough to convince consumers to buy an electric car, maybe free parking will do the trick. That’s the message from the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), a progressive U.K. think tank.
The organization is proposing that electric vehicles in the U.K. be allowed to park for free in permitted areas, designated parking lots, and along the sides of most major streets outside city centers. IPPR said EV owners should receive a green badge granting the parking privilege, as well as free use of toll roads and free access to congestion zones. (Low emissions vehicles are currently exempt from London’s congestion zone fees.)
The most controversial part of the plan is to offset free EV parking by increasing parking rates for conventional vehicles, and levying fines for internal combustion cars blocking EV charging spots.
The use of free parking as an electric car incentive has not been widely used in the United States. For about 15 years, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) waived parking fees for drivers of electric vehicles—a perk valued at $30 per day. But that perk was discontinued on March 1, 2013.
Several California cities, including Santa Monica, Santa Cruz and Berkeley, offer a number of free EV parking spots in congested downtown areas.
In a 2011 survey of 7,000 consumers in 13 countries, Accenture found that 65 percent of respondents would be more inclined to buy a plug-in car if free parking were available.
From plugincars magazine