The truce is over. From next Wednesday, 9 June, the Municipality will reactivate Area B, paid parking, the normal hours of Area C (from 7.30 to 19.30) and also the ban on parking for cleaning the streets. The “sting” was now in the air, once the schools are over, the measures that had been put on stand by due to the Covid emergency and contingent means will be triggered, even if at the moment the capacity on board still remains at 50% .
As regards Area B, 145 cameras will be back in operation, 55 immediately for sanctioning purposes and the others as the pre-exercise period ends. Another 43 will be installed and progressively activated during the year. The suspension for diesel euro 4 remains in force until further notice. The anti-smog traffic zone was suspended since last October 23rd. Area C had instead been reactivated from 24 February with reduced hours, from 10 to 19.30, and from Wednesday it will be fully operational again from 7.30. And the paid blue stripes will return (suspended since last November 5), together with the controls – and therefore the fines – for prohibition of parking when cleaning the streets. Specific exceptions will remain in force for people working in the health and social-health sector of the emergency. The councilor for Mobility Marco Granelli explains that since the passage in the yellow zone traffic has progressively increased, the congestion index compared to 2019 is 47% higher while the entrances to Area C of the cars that would be subject to the payment of the ticket are higher 37%. With the absence of students on the vehicles, “passengers will drop in the most critical hours” and “in recent weeks there has been an increase in the use of bicycles and shared vehicles”, thus reducing transport. Mayor Beppe Sala imagining the controversy said that “it is really false to think that we take these decisions for cash reasons, we are doing it because the traffic is increasing a lot, therefore for the health of the Milanese. When it was necessary we suspended the measures and now with the closure of the schools we believe it is necessary, always for the health of the Milanese, to do differently. Those who dispute decisions like these are putting themselves on the wrong side. The city certainly belongs to those who come to work but it is primarily the Milanese ”.
Fdi director Riccardo De Corato denies this: «But what health of citizens? Sala thinks about the health of the municipal coffers. These are completely useless measures to reduce smog, the Arpa control units in Milan have recorded for 9 days a concentration of PM10 below 30 micrograms per cubic meter, therefore within the norm ». The same goes for the Fdi group leader Andrea Mascaretti: “It only serves to make cash on the shoulders of the workers”. For Forza Italia director Gianluca Comazzi «reactivating Area B is a shameful choice. For the sole purpose of making cash, the Municipality risks undermining the excellent vaccination campaign carried out by the Region. In such a delicate moment, reactivating the LTZ at full capacity and reintroducing paid parking lots means crowding the vehicles and endangering thousands of citizens ”. Comazzi has launched a petition against Area B and in a few days has collected hundreds of signatures. According to the parent company Fi Fabrizio De Pasquale it is also “a class measure, because it takes away the right to move to those who do not have the money to change cars, it is penalizing for workers and companies that after a year of Covid are obliged to invest in the means and it is useless for the environment ». Even the councilor of the Lega Silvia Sardone jokes about the “cheek of Sala that linked the reactivation to the health of the Milanese, there is no longer any limit to the teasing of this junta that puts the Milanese in front of a crossroads: or pay a toll to move around the city or to crowd on public transport risking contagion. There are thousands of Milanese who cannot afford a new car to get around. And it has been amply demonstrated that Area B is practically irrelevant in combating smog ».