The Manchester congestion charge supporters say that we’re intending spending vast amounts on improving the public transport infrastructure. However, Londoners (who already have a pretty good infrastructure) have recently asked for their congestion charge expansion area to be removed. London’s mayor has done just that, see the article in the Daily Mail.
The reasons? Market traders had lost a lot of business and there was a fear that a new retail centre (OUTSIDE THE CHARGING ZONE) would make London’s Portobello market completely non-viable.
The important point to bear in mind here is that companies will build out of charge area shopping to attract shoppers. The many who currently come to The Trafford Centre from all over the UK will probably start going elsewhere if they have to pay the congestion charge to enter. Or to a new "Trafford Centre" outside the charging zone. What happens to the Manchester economy then? Less shoppers, less income, less shops, less shop staff and also less congestion charge revenue!
Also how can we believe Manchester revenue estimates to pay for the charges implementation and running when Transport for London (which has researched the impact of the London congestion charge scheme since 2003) estimated expected revenue for the expansion to be £70 million and it seems likely that revenues are actually more like £14 million?