Zurich: Cutting jobs to streamline traffic?

Local Zurich politicians have been meeting since Wednesday with the daunting task of designing the city of the future. According to the “TagesAnzeiger”, this is to regulate all aspects of the densification and expansion of the city until 2040. A proposal from the Greens has launched city councilors into a major debate on the future of Zurich : should we cut jobs there? The environmentalist party believes that reducing the number of workplaces in town could alleviate traffic problems by making commuter traffic more fluid.

The Greens started the debate by proposing to ensure that there is only one job for two residents in the future. However, at present, the report is more of a place of work for an inhabitant. The idea behind this proposal would be to reduce travel between work and home. There would be fewer jobs, so simply fewer people commuting to work and more fluid traffic. If the idea did not succeed, the Greens demanded that at least, in the new densification zones, the number of jobs does not increase.

The bourgeois parties within the Communal Council did not fail to criticize the Green proposal. For them, the demands of the green party unnecessarily inflate the workload around the project. The right-wing considers it utopian to think that commuter traffic could be massively reduced: the majority of workers simply cannot live near their workplace. Not to mention the rental prices which would be affected.

If the Vert’liberals recognize traffic problems and think that it is necessary “to stop dividing Zurich into living quarters and work quarters and, on the contrary, unite the two”, as Ann-Catherine Nabholz says. With the PS and the PLR, the Vert’liberals therefore lobbied for workspaces to be created in all areas of the city which, according to the structural plan, will be densified beyond the current limit. Finally, the president of the PS, Corine Mauch, clearly rejects the idea: “It is simply the wrong approach, we cannot tell people to work where they live.”


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