New Traffic Measures: Fines, Extended Subway Hours and More Buses

New traffic measures that will see up to 800,000 cars taken off Beijing’s road every working day, come into effect today. All cars with license plates ending with either a 1 or 6 are not permitted to be driven within the Fifth Ring Road between 6am to 9pm this evening. Announced in late September, see our earlier post here, the plan is to have cars with number plates ending with certain digits banned from the roads within the Fifth Ring Road one day a week. In the past few days Beijing authorities have released more detailed information about the plan:

For the first month of implementation drivers caught taking their vehicles to the road on restricted days will get off with a verbal warning. After this initial period, those caught flaunting the ban will be fined RMB 100. However, no points will be deducted from the driver’s license.

Extended Subway Hours
In order to support the new car restriction measures, the Beijing Subway Company has announced that they will extend the operating hours of the city’s subway lines starting this week, though details of the new running times have still not been released. In a related move, public transport authorities will also increase the number of bus lines servicing the first/final stops on the various subway lines.

More Buses
Starting from today, the city’s transport bureau will increase the number of buses on Beijing’s streets by 10% to 18,000 vehicles. The bureau has also announced that 10 of the 34 Olympic bus lines will be retained indefinitely and that these services will now operate from 6am daily. They’ve also increased the number of evening services by 3 lines so that there are now 15 lines operating overnight. They’ve also extended the operating hours of other bus lines.

Varied Office and Business Hours
The office hours of various unspecified industries and work units scattered across the city have been staggered to start at 8.30, 9 and 9.30am to help relieve peak hour traffic congestion. The office hours of national government bodies, Beijing government offices and schools remain the same. Business hours of most of Beijing’s large department stores have been set as 10am-10pm. Most stores we’re already operating on this time frame but some department stores have been forced to push back the time they open by half and hour.

An Added Layer of Complexity
Like the rules of a complex card game, the new regulations state that each month the days that certain cars are forced to remain in the garage will change. So although cars with registration plates ending in 1 or 6 won’t be able to drive on Monday’s for the whole month, come November they’ll be off the road on some other day of the week. The traffic bureau will announce the measures a week before the start of every month.

Links and Sources
China Daily: New traffic restriction takes effect in Beijing
The Beijinger: Beyond Odds and Evens: Beijing’s New Plan to Reduce the Number of Cars
The Beijinger: On the Road: Petrol Prices Up, Personalized Plates and Cops on Electric Bikes
Sina: 变更号牌需提交六类证明资料
The Beijing News: 尾号1和6今禁入五环
NetEase: 北京今起同组尾号限行车可变更号牌
Sohu: 北京将施行交通便民新措施 下周地铁末班车延时


good lord that's complex.

rotating number days, subway hours extended but not specified ... what a clusterfuck.

I got an idea, why not make the car bans factored on the sum of the western calendar date plus the Chinese lunar calendar date? this way it can be uniformly confusing for everyone.

Books by current and former Beijinger staffers

Unless you drive several cars, it should be quite simple to remember which day you are not allowed to drive on.

Night busses: Has anybody ever seen one? Any timetables / routes available online?!

Why change it every month? Plus a 100 yuan fine will not deter many people.

The night buses are called Yebanche (夜班车) they're the twelve lines that start with 201 through to 212.

Poeloq wrote:
Unless you drive several cars, it should be quite simple to remember which day you are not allowed to drive on.

Night busses: Has anybody ever seen one? Any timetables / routes available online?!

yes but if they change it month by month? what if you are out of town when they make next month's announcement?

Books by current and former Beijinger staffers

I'm sure the announcement will be made available on the Internet and such sites as this will relay it for expat drivers in due time

I don't understand how the government can pass this restriction. It is definitely against the Constitution and the Property Law. Individuals have rights and freedom to use their legal personal belongings, nobody can violate this fundamental right. It's so clear that if the public government wants to restrict this kind of right, it has to follow the hearing procedure and give reimbursements. Did the government do that? The reason of having such a serious traffic problem is not just because there are too many cars, more likely, it is because the city does not have a sustainable construction plan.

Today's paper had reports that the days on which various cars can not drive under the new regulations will switch on Nov 11. They still haven't announced what the rules for Nov-Dec will be - and plan to do so a week before the switch.

whytetyger, I'd love to hear you cite the relevant passages from the laws and constitution you mention. I'll think you'll find that a government, especially one in a system such as the People's Republic has it, can pretty much do anything they want that they believe is going to make "society more harmonious" or whatever the current trend word may be. Also: Roads are the property of the state and you reimburse them (road tax) for using their roads, not the other way round.

Hi, so here are the news albeit some belatedly: those who were banned on Mondays get to drive then but NOT anymore on Tuesdays, the former Tuesday bans shift to Wednesday, the former Wednesday bans shift to Thursday etc.
ie : bans for cars number plate ending with 1 or 6 on Tuesdays, 2 or 7 on Wednesdays, 3 or 8 on Thursdays, 4 or 9 on Fridays, 0 or 5 on Mondays. Until next month around December 11. Mingbai?

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