How ADEME supports cities in transition

Updated 12/11/2019

Over 230 restricting access zone to the most polluting vehicles were implemented in 13 European countries in 2018.

Although they are local initiatives, they have one commune ambition: reducing air pollution caused by road traffic. In France, up until now, those zones were called Restricted Circulation Zone (ZCR) but the future mobility law predict a wider deployment plan and rename ZCR as Low Emission Mobility Zone (ZFEM).

Strasbourg a pionneer city

Strasbourg is ready to go further in reducing the number of polluting vehicles in circulation. Last year, the French cycling capital won the call for project proposals launched by ADEME and the Ministry for Ecological and Inclusive Transition. As the result of the proposals, 19 cities where shortlisted to be accompanied in the establishment of ZFEM. Regarding the Eurometropole of Strasbourg, the aim is to build on the current measures in place and extend them to the 33 municipalities that make up the Eurometropole. For the moment, it only concerns the historic center: the neighborhood of “Grande Île” (Big Island).

ZFE regulations

Although the ZCR regulations only concerned delivery vehicles, the ZFE new set-up aims to remove all diesel vehicles from the whole of the city by 2025, 2026 at the latest. In France, the ZFEs rely on a system of Crit’Air badges, a sticker that helps differentiate the cars according to their pollutant emissions levels. The most polluting vehicles cannot have one that is why they are the first to be taken off the roads as part of the ZFE scheme. The Crit’Air badges are ranked according to 6 environmental classes, and appear as either “green” Crit’Air (hydrogen or electric vehicles) stickers or are labelled Crit’Air 1 to 5.
From 2021 only vehicles with a “Crit’Air” badge will be allowed on Strasbourg’s road, followed by the Crit’Air 5,4,3 then 2 between 2022 and 2025.

Towards clean mobility

Although the main goal is to end diesel, we must find a way to implement a transition toward cleaner mobility. To do so, the support strategies will play a role in the success of the ZFEs. The Eurometropole of Strasbourg will focus on developing alternatives to individual car usage such as public transport, car sharing, electric bicycles… The aim is to offer physically and financially accessible transportation modes to citizens with restricted access to mobility (low income, jobseekers, precarious workers, the elderly, those with reduced mobility…). Strasbourg hopes to provide a sustainable mobility model such as in other European cities (Copenhagen, Stuttgart and Freiburg).

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