A radical vision drawn up by council bosses to tackle congestion in Canterbury will see the city split into five separate zones - with residents banned from driving directly between each.
Motorists will be unable to make simple journeys across the city, and will face fines enforced using number-plate recognition cameras if they break the authority's proposed rules.
They will instead have to drive out of their 'neighbourhood' and onto a new bypass - essentially a much larger outer ring-road - before re-entering their chosen zone.
It will mean short, direct journeys across the city - whether to supermarkets, retail parks or GP surgeries - will be prohibited, in a bid to encourage residents to walk, cycle or use public transport.
The proposal is part of the council's new draft Local Plan and modelled on a system used in the Belgian city of Ghent.
Bosses are pinning their hopes on it ridding Canterbury of its perennial issue with city centre gridlock.
However, opposition councillors have blasted the proposal, labelling the five new zones as "ghettos" and questioning how residents will be able to go about their day-to-day lives.
Minor roads and rat-runs linking each of the zones will be closed, with drivers forced to either ditch their cars or use the bypass to dip in and out of the five neighbourhoods.
Automatic number plate reading (ANPR) cameras will be in operation at entry and exit points to each of the zones - ensuring drivers are unable to sneak between neighbourhoods without facing a fine.
Motorists will instead be directed onto the new bypass, which is to stretch from Sturry to the A2 near Bridge, and then link to the A28 at Thanington.
Plans for a western bypass at Harbledown - potentially cutting through Duke’s Meadow - have been scrapped, with upgrades to Rough Common Road being favoured instead.
Council leader Ben Fitter-Harding - who has worked on what is being called the Canterbury Circulation Plan for the past two years - is confident the major transformation of the city's road network will be a success.
"The purpose isn't to declare war on motorists - the purpose is to make things easier," he said.
"Congestion isn't sustainable on the trajectory it is on. I really hope that in 2045 people will look back and see this is what made Canterbury realise the potential it has.
"It is a great city, but it can be so much more than that if we fix the fundamental flaws in the way transport works.
"We're not creating China here. We're not in lockdown and everyone has to stay in their neighbourhood.
"No one's movement will be constrained at all - it's cars going down the rat runs that will be stopped.
"For residents within the five zones, they can access the facilities within their neighbourhood by car if they need to. But if you want to travel into a different neighbourhood, the best way to do that will be by walking, cycling or using public transport.
"It would likely be a frictionless system, so there will just be cameras and no barriers. We'd fine people if they just decided 'I'm going to drive across the city, I don't care'.
"We're not going to create physical barriers, but if you drive between neighbourhoods you'd receive a fine. In an emergency, you wouldn't be prevented from going through, but mostly it would only be people with permits - taxis, delivery vehicles, blue badge holders and public transport - who'd be allowed.
"When other cities tried this approach, the technology wasn't there - but now we have it. We've got loads of experience with ANPR so we'll be able to deploy a system like this.
"The amenities and services that you'd need would all be in your neighbourhood. You wouldn't have all the rat running, and there'd be more space to park your cars and space for bus provision and lanes. It will be a nicer environment, so it'd be fantastic if we can achieve it."
Despite authority chiefs having great confidence in the plan, veteran Lib Dem councillor Nick Eden-Green says the scheme throws up "serious questions".
"Getting to shops, supermarkets, cinemas, cafes, let alone the hospital or the doctor, will mean difficult and much longer journeys for many existing residents, let alone new ones," he said.
"It will actually add to the traffic, not reduce it. That flies in the face of trying to be carbon-neutral.
"When I visit friends I don't consider which zone they are living in. It's frankly ridiculous.
"You're creating ghettos where people are locked in and can't travel elsewhere.
"Whether or not you can go to the supermarket may depend on what side of the road you live on."
Cllr Fitter-Harding, however, argues that the major shake-up will vastly improve public transport systems and cycle routes - giving residents an abundance of new ways to get around the city.
He said: "Essentially you'll have a bypass that starts at Thanington on the A28 and goes all the way around, through Mountfield Park and all the way back to the A28 towards Thanet. Rough Common Road will also be improved. It therefore makes a complete bypass of the city.
"That enables the city centre to be a far nicer and more vibrant place for people to live, work and visit through a dramatically better public transport system.
"At the moment our public transport is stuck in the same traffic that everybody else is. We can create something which will be so much better than we have now.
"It will be brilliant if less people want to drive in Canterbury due to its amazing bus service. I'm confident we can have one, with people knowing they can go to a car park and hop on a bus within a few minutes for a really cheap price."
Where will the bypass go?
Officially named the eastern movement corridor, a new bypass will stretch for about four miles from Sturry to the A2 at Bridge.
The existing A2 will then act as part of the bypass and drivers will use new roads coming off the dual-carriageway through the Saxon Fields development at Thanington - where they will then come out near the Milton Manor Roundabout.
A new A2 access to the Kent and Canterbury Hospital - or a proposed super hospital - will also be created.
Would I be able to drive across the city?
No, not in the way you normally do. Driving through the five zones is prohibited.
Motorists will have to use the outer ring (bypass) to reach their desired destination. New slip roads and junctions will be added to the A2 and A28 in order to increase the number of access points out of the five neighbourhoods.
Residents' daily commutes to work will be forced to change.
Those who break the rules and drive between neighbourhoods without using the city's outer ring will be fined. The price of the fine has not yet been agreed.
Council leader Ben Fitter-Harding explained: "This is a hard stop as we'll be saying you won't be able to use the ring-road anymore, but people won't need to use it..
"That's the beauty of redesigning people's journeys. We've never considered a congestion charge - all that would do is cause economic damage."
What if I'm a visitor to Canterbury?
Those visiting the city from other Kent districts and boroughs, or tourists, will not be able to park within the city walls.
Most car parks will therefore become redundant.
Visitors and tourists will instead park up in one of the four zones which surround the city centre. Each of the zones will have its own park and ride site which will take visitors into the city.
Cllr Fitter-Harding explained: "Most car parks within the city walls will be relocated to outside, so very close, certainly close enough to walk/cycle, with docked cycle hire and hopper buses to help move people around if they need it.
"Blue badge parking would remain and any other necessary business parking, resident parking will remain.
"This will create opportunities to enhance sites like Watling Street and even Queningate into much more pleasant spaces or new housing and facilities."
Will I be able to park at my workplace or will I have to use park and ride?
Workplaces are set to get permits allowing employees to park at their place of work if there is on-site parking.
What if I want to go to a supermarket or shop not in my dedicated zone?
A car journey, for example, from Old Dover Road to Wincheap Morrisons will not be permitted via the existing ring-road.
Those living in Old Dover Road would either have to walk, cycle or use public transport to reach Morrisons - or drive out of their designated neighbourhood, onto the bypass and reach the supermarket that way.
Cllr Fitter-Harding said: "In 20 years time, you're likely going to have your groceries delivered or you're going to go to a different supermarket or a new local shop in your neighbourhood.
"It's an awfully long time away. People are going to look at this and think 'Oh my God, how am I going to do the journeys I do now?'. But you've got to think, we aren't planning this for now - this is for the future.
"If you did want to drive to a supermarket outside of your zone, you could drive out of your neighbourhood onto the outer ring to get there.
"They may not be able to drive quickly to their usual supermarket, but there will be another one that they can go to, or more likely, they can get it delivered.
"But by 2045, will people actually be driving to their supermarket in the same way that they do now? You could use a hopper bus to get there, choose your shopping and get it delivered back to you."
Labour leader Dave Wilson - a strong opponent to the council's plan - said: "They've just opened Riverside, the council's flagship new attraction - yet how are people going to get there to use the car park?
"Four-fifths of the city population won't be able to get there as they can't go through zones."
What happens to the existing ring-road?
The sight of cars back-to-back around the ring-road will be no more.
Much more room will be given to pedestrians, cyclists and buses, and less space to private cars.
Due to residents being unable to travel between neighbourhoods, they will not be able to access the whole ring-road - only the section which is within their zone.
Will the neighbourhoods have names?
Titles for the five zones have not yet been considered.
What does the leading opposition party think of it?
Labour leader Dave Wilson only found out about the plan with fellow councillors at a briefing on Monday night, branding the entire process an "abuse of power".
"It is the worst sort of top-down imposition of a plan which has massive implications for everyone who lives in the city," he said.
"There are undoubtedly good elements relating to climate change and environmental improvements in this plan, but this is no way to convince people of its merits.
"We as councillors haven't been consulted on this. It's no way to run a democracy.
"The council has come up with this plan and they are telling people - whose day-to-day lives it will impact drastically - that they have to suck it up.
"If you're really serious about changing people's behaviour you have to give them options, not force something on them. It's not the way to do it.
"Why not consider having free park and ride for residents? There are other ways to do things.
"This scheme is entirely predicated on the creation of an outer ring-road, but they don't know where it's going to go, they don't know when it's going to be built. Without that certainty the rest of the scheme falls apart."
Cllr Wilson stresses that if Labour comes into power at May's local elections the party would axe the plan, and propose alternative methods to reduce congestion.
"I expect residents will strongly resist this, we won't implement this" he said.
When will it come into force?
The vision forms part of the council's new proposals for its Local Plan - the authority's future blueprint for all development in the district up until 2045.
The council's cabinet will make a decision on whether to carry out a 12-week consultation on the plan during a special meeting at 7pm next Wednesday.
After hearing feedback from residents, the council will put together its detailed vision before being its considered for approval by a government-appointed Planning Inspector.
The traffic proposals are envisaged to come into force in the 2040s.
"This vision for the Local Plan is certainly radical, it's very exciting," Cllr Fitter-Harding said.
"It's going to take time for people to absorb and understand it.
"Residents will rightly be concerned at how these changes will impact their daily lives. But this is going to be 20 years in the making - it isn't going to happen tomorrow.
"We want to work with you and talk to you. As radical as it may seem, this plan has only come out of years of consultation and working with residents and businesses to understand what they want from the city.
"I don't think there's anybody out there who can say they like the congestion and air pollution and infrequent buses. This is a comprehensive plan that solves the problem and doesn't just nibble around the edges.
"I think residents will see there are incredible benefits from these proposals.
"At whichever point I step away from this role, I want to be sure that whatever hand I played in what comes next is going to be something that is really valuable."