More Lanes Means More Traffic

U. of Toronto economist Matthew Turner discusses his study that shows that building more traffic lanes attracts more traffic. Likewise, providing more transit may lure motorists out of their cars, but those motorists are replaced.

Turner explains his two traffic equations to NPR's weekend All Things Considered host Guy Raz:

+1=+1

[If you increase the number of highways in a city by 1 percent, it causes driving to also increase by 1 percent.]

+1=0

[Increasing public transit by 1 percent has no effect on traffic.] However, it will have a positive impact on public transit.

"Ultimately, Turner's research has shown that the only way to deal with congestion is to follow the lead of cities like London, Singapore and Stockholm, which have adopted "congestion pricing" - tolls on people driving in the center city. Turner says Stockholm, specifically, has seen a 50 percent reduction in travel time at peak times because of tolls."

Turner's 4 July 2010 draft paper, "The Fundamental Law of Road Congestion: Evidence from US cities" is available from the NPR webpage.

Thanks to Eric Gilbertson

Full Story: More Roads May Pave The Way To More Traffic

Comments

building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.
$25
Red necktie with map of Boston

For dads and grads: tie one on to celebrate your city!

Choose from over 20 styles imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
$44.95
Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

New! 4th Edition of the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs just released.
Starting at $24.95
Book cover of Unsprawl

Unsprawl: Remixing Spaces as Places

Explore visionary, controversial and ultimately successful strategies for building people-centered places.
Starting at $12.95