Traffic Congestion

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.
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.
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
December 17, 2008, 7am PST
In this op-ed, the executive director of the San Francisco County Transportation Authority makes a case for congestion pricing in the City, though he is quick to indicate the SFCTA is only studying the concept to see if it could be applied there.
San Francisco Chronicle
December 1, 2008, 8am PST
Author Paul Sorensen details the findings of a recent RAND study recommending short term (i.e., within five years) fixes for rampant congestion in Southern California.
The Planning Report
October 21, 2008, 1pm PDT
According to Neal Payton, Santa Monica's Proposition T, intended to cut traffic growth, is useless.
October 17, 2008, 11am PDT
What do you get when you designate a carpool lane on a toll road for hybrids and carpoolers? A 'green' lane, say Illinois planners. However, they still pay the toll. Now add a "HOT lane overlay" to it - solo drivers can use it for a 'premium'.
Chicago Sun-Times
October 15, 2008, 10am PDT
Paradoxically, Chicago's roads are more gridlocked than ever despite fewer trips by car overall due to gas prices.
Chicago Tribune
July 12, 2008, 9am PDT
<p>Business owners fear dedicated transit lane would discourage shopping along Telegraph Avenue, while proponents look to BRT as a cheap way to clear up traffic.</p>
The San Francisco Chronicle
June 22, 2008, 5am PDT
<p>This segment from <em>NPR</em> features a discussion with Houston Mayor Bill White about the city's increasing congestion, the limits of zoning, and the population's reaction to rising gas prices.</p>
June 17, 2008, 9am PDT
<p>In Boston, the MBTA and city planners are weighing the benefits and drawbacks of creating transit-oriented development along a major traffic corridor.</p>
The Boston Globe
June 17, 2008, 6am PDT
<p>Earth Island Journal takes an in-depth look at how and why congestion pricing got the kibosh in New York.</p>
Earth Island Journal
June 4, 2008, 7am PDT
<p>This article from <em>Reason</em> argues that a double-decker traffic tunnel can effectively reduce congestion in Atlanta -- one of the most congested cities in America.</p>
May 31, 2008, 9am PDT
<p>Americans are notoriously bad at navigating European-style traffic circles, but it seems Canadians are also confounded.</p>
The Edmonton Sun