The mayor of Paris vows to combat traffic jams by putting more cars on the road

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The French capital is notorious for its traffic jams. Now the mayor of Paris has come up with a bold new plan to rid his city of tens of thousands of cars. If he pulls it off, the e-car sharing scheme may become a trailblazer for other congested cities around the world.

This makes no sense. There are two problems: parking and traffic jams. I’ll grant that having a fleet of 3,000 electric cars available can ease the parking situation, since that’s potentially tens of thousands of cars that don’t need to be parked in the city.

But this will actually increase traffic. Everyone who would have been driving at any given moment can still drive, either in their own car or potentially in one of these. But in addition, there are some people who previously would have taken the metro who will now say to themselves, “I can get there faster if I drive one of these electric cars.” So in reality this will mean up to 3,000 more cars on the road at any one time.

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