Sofia's New Traffic Rule: Ban on Older Cars in City Center from Friday

Society | November 27, 2023, Monday // 13:14
Bulgaria: Sofia's New Traffic Rule: Ban on Older Cars in City Center from Friday Photo: Stella Ivanova @novinite.com

In an effort to combat air pollution, Sofia city officials have announced a ban on older cars from entering the city center starting this Friday. The restriction specifically targets vehicles over 30 years old with gasoline engines and those over 20 years old with diesel engines.

The ban, set to be enforced until March 1, applies to the area known as the "Small Ring" (in red, "Малък ринг"), encompassing certain boulevards and streets including "Vasil Levski," "Patriarch Evtimii," "Gen. Skobelev," "Opalchenska," and "Slivnitsa" boulevard.

This measure aims to alleviate air pollution during the winter months when the city often experiences cold and foggy weather conditions. However, it also disrupts the direct travel routes between different districts of Sofia, potentially discouraging the use of private vehicles.

Exceptions to the ban are made for residents living within the restricted area. Individuals with parking stickers issued for the paid zones in the city will be automatically exempted. Those without the sticker need to apply to the Center for Urban Mobility to bypass the restrictions. Additionally, special provisions are made for people with disabilities, allowing registration of up to two cars for passage through the zones.

The initiative, led by Mayor Yordanka Fandakova's team, was previously delayed due to refinement requests by "Democratic Bulgaria" and was formally adopted at the end of 2022.

Future plans involve extending the restriction to the "Great Ring" (in green "Голям ринг") area by December 1, 2025, creating a more comprehensive low-emission zone in the city.

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Tags: sofia, traffic, air pollution, restrictions, cars

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