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Positive evaluation for Brussels pedestrian zone
Eight months after the introduction of the Brussels pedestrian zone and new traffic plan, the initiative has received a mostly positive evaluation, reports De Standaard.
The controversial, eight-month-old pedestrian zone in the city centre is successful overall, according to an evaluation presented today by the City Council. "Despite all the criticism, we can proudly say that the capital has made the final transition to a modern, accessible city with a high quality of life," says Brussels mayor Yvan Mayeur. Mobility alderwoman Els Ampe is also pleased with the evaluation: "We have met each and every one of our goals, and the results are better than expected."
The first objective - more pedestrians and cyclists on the central boulevards - was met straight away, and the altered traffic plan for cars did not lead to additional congestion, as some sceptics feared. A report created by an external engineering consultancy and Brussels Mobility shows an overall decline in traffic, and improved circulation across the Brussels-Capital Region.
The evaluation shows more positive effects: taxi use increased by 14% since the introduction of the pedestrian zone, there has been a decrease in litter thanks to the installation of some 80 new bins, and figures from Brussels Environment show that air pollution in the pedestrian zone has dropped by up to 64% compared to eight months ago.