Paris to charge riders of gasoline-fueled motorbikes for parking

Motorcycles are seen on parking spaces in a street in Paris, France, June 27, 2022. REUTERS/Geert De Clercq

PARIS (Reuters) – Riders of gasoline-fueled motorcycles will have to start paying for parking in Paris from September as the French capital aims to reduce noise and pollution, but parking for electric motorcycles remains free, a city hall official said on Monday.

The new charge fulfills a campaign promise of socialist mayor Anne Hidalgo and was set to start in January, but the measure was delayed as Hidalgo made a bid for the French presidency in the spring.

Paris mobility chief David Belliard, an ecologist whose party is part of Hidalgo’s coalition, said on franceinfo radio that the city aims to better regulate the use of public space.

“There is a lot of anarchy when it comes to parking. And we also need to reduce the disturbing noise levels as well as pollution,” Belliard said on Monday.

Parking for electric scooters and motorbikes is still free, he said. People who have no other option than their combustion-engine motorbike to go to work would be able to buy subscriptions for underground parking lots, Belliard said.

He gave no details on the new parking fees, but said motorcyclists would pay less for parking than car drivers.

A year ago, city hall said in a statement that from January 2022, non-resident motorcyclists would have to pay three euros ($3.2) per hour to park in the 11 most central districts of the French capital and two euros in outlying arrondissements, corresponding to about half the cost of parking for cars.

In recent years, mayor Hidalgo has built a network of new bike lanes and increased parking fees for cars in a bid to steer Parisians and commuters towards more environmentally-friendly transport options.

Motorcycling organizations and Paris’ conservative opposition have called the motorbike parking fee plan a new tax that will not reduce congestion, while groups representing cyclists and pedestrians have welcomed the move, saying it was long overdue.

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