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Norway Bans Cars in Oslo’s Downtown District

posted: 10/20/15
by: Discovery.com Staff
Oslo at night
Stefan Tariczky via Flickr

In a first-of-its-kind attempt to reduce air pollution, Norwegian officials have announced a ban on nearly all car traffic in the central district of Oslo.

Reuters reports that the ban will be in place by 2019. The city will invest in beefed-up public transportation and build nearly 40 miles of bike lanes to help residents get around.

Excluded from the ban are trucks delivering goods to business and certain automobiles that transport residents with physical disabilities.

"We want to have a car-free center," Green Party official Lan Marie Nguyen Berg said in a press conference. "We want to make it better for pedestrians, cyclists. It will be better for shops and everyone."

While several other large cities have introduced congestion taxes and temporary bans to cut down on automobile traffic, no other city has introduced such a comprehensive moratorium.

Although only 1,000 people live in the affected area, nearly 90,000 people commute into the city center.

The move is part of a larger plan to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.

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