Traffic Congestion

July 20, 2011, 11am PDT
Using remote sensing, GPS technology and other high-tech strategies, city traffic planners aim to clear Midtown's infamous traffic problems - from Queens. The $1.6 million investment will tackle a problem costing the city about $13 billion a year.
New York Post
July 11, 2011, 8am PDT
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.
NPR:All Things Considered
June 24, 2011, 7am PDT
The U.S. Department of Transportation in 2007 selected five cities it thought could effectively implement congestion pricing, but none have come to fruition. What's holding back congestion pricing in the U.S.?
Next American City
June 16, 2011, 2pm PDT
Jeff Wood of Reconnecting America interviewed a variety of thought leaders at the recent Congress for the New Urbanism. In this video, he talks with Jeff Tumlin about getting Santa Monica, California to embrace growth.
Reconnecting America
March 31, 2011, 9am PDT
INRIX, a traffic analysis company, recently released its 100 Most Congested Metros list. Los Angeles and New York predictably come out on top, but the more interesting finding is that traffic has increased significantly.
INRIX
Blog post
March 9, 2011, 7am PST

A few weeks ago the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) released its latest Urban Mobility Report, and yesterday INRIX released its National Traffic Scorecard 2010 Annual Report. Both paint a grim picture of roadway conditions.

“America is back on the road to gridlock,” warns INRIX.

Todd Litman
January 20, 2011, 2pm PST
The Texas Transportation Institute just released its 2010 Urban Mobility Report, which is a standard reference in the road-building industry -- and is seriously flawed, says Joe Cortright.
CEOs For Cities
December 27, 2010, 5am PST
To reduce congestion, Beijing will follow in Shanghai's footsteps set 10 years ago by limiting new car registrations; only Beijing residents will be able to obtain one,and only vehicles with such plates will be allowed entrance to city center in 2011
The Wall Street Journal: Autos
October 3, 2010, 9am PDT
We've been measuring traffic congestion all wrong, a new report shows, and that's been making more highways look like the solution to long commutes. They're not.
Streetsblog
September 4, 2010, 1pm PDT
Marina Hyde writes that the "horrible thing about China's 62-mile nine-day jam was that it destroyed the certainty that travel will inevitably result in arrival."
The Guardian
Blog post
August 22, 2010, 6pm PDT

The graph below shows the most recent USDOT vehicle-travel data covering the last 25 years. Although vehicle-miles of travel (VMT) grew steadily during most of the Twentieth Century, in recent years the growth rate stopped and even declined a little. It is now about 10% below where it would have been had past trends continued.

US VMT Trends

Todd Litman
Blog post
March 28, 2010, 1pm PDT
When Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s suggested that bicyclists’ needs should be accommodated in federally-funded road projects, the road lobby responded with something approaching hysteria.
Michael Lewyn
March 16, 2010, 6am PDT
Houston Rodeo is actually hurting some businesses around Reliant Center.
KUHF Houston Public Radio
March 10, 2010, 9am PST
Dwindling tax revenues force fiscal restraint in Maryland, where planners are shifting money from highway expansion to infrastructure maintenance.
Baltimore Sun
Blog post
November 16, 2009, 2pm PST

This week, I finally got around to looking at the latest (2009) Texas Transportation Institute study on traffic congestion. (1)

Two facts struck me as interesting.  First, the great congestion surge of the past decade or two is over.  In most large metropolitan areas, congestion (measured as hours lost to congestion per traveler) peaked around 2005, and actually declined in 2005-07.  For example, in Atlanta, hours lost to congestion peaked at 61, and decreased to 57 by 2007.  Congestion increased in only three of the fourteen largest regions (Washington, Detroit and Houston)- and in each of these by only one hour per traveler.

Michael Lewyn
September 7, 2009, 11am PDT
London is attempting to make streets safer for cyclists and motorists by turning off traffic lights in one part of the city for a short amount of time.
The New York Times
August 30, 2009, 5am PDT
Reducing traffic congestion can have big economic benefits for communities, according to a new study from the Reason Foundation.
Reason
May 5, 2009, 1pm PDT
Japan's four major highway operators will drastically lower their tolls, thanks to a generous government economic stimulus package aimed to encourage motoring during the major holidays. The operators are preparing for the enormous traffic jams.
Bloomberg.com
May 4, 2009, 2pm PDT
The Town Council of Ealing, U.K. is experimenting with covering up its traffic lights at certain intersections, which they believe will increase safety and awareness.
The Times of London
April 7, 2009, 8am PDT
Officials in Lagos, Nigeria, are praising the recently installed Bus Rapid Transit system as making distinct improvements in mobility for the crowded and growing African city.
This Day