What are the Main Causes of Congestion in Big Cities?
You know how frustrating waiting in your car through traffic is. After a long day, we all rush to get home so we can rest, and somehow, we all get stuck in the same places. That makes us wonder, what are the main causes of congestion on these roads.
Besides the reasons, we all look for a way to avoid these jams, and we still get stuck through the other routes. For that reason, understanding the congestion causes, and ways in which the city can improve its infrastructure are essential in solving this issue.
Current infrastructural problems
Most of the roads and highways we drive on every day are made more than 20 years ago. They were created to suit that period when the number of cars was drastically smaller. When they were remade, the only thing that improved was their width, and they reached their maximum potential.
However, with an increased number of cars and migration of people to the cities, the road infrastructure has come to its limits. They cannot fit that many vehicles, and during certain periods of the day, congestion is inevitable.
Solving this problem can be done with a decrease in the number of vehicle owners. In addition, investing in alternative transportation methods that can be used instead of driving alone and causing congestion. Creating a tighter driving schedule for public transportation, it becomes a more efficient option for many.
Lack of alternative transportation options
When public transportation is not efficient enough, with irregular lines and frequent delays, people use the simple solution of driving on their own. However, as explained above, the roads are not made for that many vehicles so congestions occur.
Instead, the city administration has to promote the use of alternative transportation options. For example, creating infrastructure for biking and coming up with a bike renting service that is affordable enough for its citizens.
In addition, coming up with facilities where people can park their bikes without worrying about getting them stolen. Many states have promoted this transportation option, with facilities that besides parking, people can get their bikes fixed and purchase new parts if needed.
Carpooling is another huge factor that can influence the congestion on a highway. This solution at ittutoria proves that carpooling does indeed improve traffic.
Tolls working solely on money
If you live outside the city area, you surely have to go through the highway to get home. However, the jams on the highways are even more boring than the ones in the city.
Well, the biggest reasons for creating congestion on these roads are the tolls. When they work only with cash, people have to stop, count their money, and pay which significantly slows the driving dynamics.
Instead, many countries have implemented a system where people insert chips near their windshields. The system reads the chip, which is connected to your bank account and you pay automatically. This significantly improves the driving conditions and promotes congestion-free roads.
Bad driving habits
Sometimes, even when all the other driving conditions are good, people tend to cause congestion because of their habits. It only takes one unnecessary brake to slow the whole traffic. For that reason, many states implemented a system where a gradual speed limit decrease has been induced.
When slowing down on purpose, you leave time from the contrary traffic to clear up, and you can pass freely after. In addition, the purposeful slowing decreased the number of crashes which made the traffic safer for everyone.
Badly managed transportation
With different vehicles included in the traffic, there must be prioritization when making the laws. Until now, every vehicle was on the same spot on the hierarchy. This made the alternative options less favorable since cars become a primary choice for most of the participants.
Especially on roads with one or two lanes, congestions happen because of sudden stops of busses, and not letting them merge in traffic again. Instead, the city should prioritize the public transportation units since there are many people inside, unlike cars which are often used by a single person.
Traffic lights that are not adjusted
Another reason why congestions happen in big cities is that the lights are not properly adjusted. You have surely been in a situation where you catch every light on red. This causes frustration in drivers, and besides the slow dynamics, it can be a reason for mistakes and crashes.
Inducing green waves where people driving at a certain speed catch all the lights on the green is a great way to minimize the waiting. For example, promoting a green wave when driving 45 kilometers per hour, makes the traffic quicker, while giving people the ability to brake effectively if needed.
Not optimized parking spots
Looking for a parking spot in big cities can sometimes be such a frustrating situation. Most of the parking places in the centers are full, so you have to find a place to leave your vehicle. In addition, the street spots are the reason behind unneeded congestion.
To battle this situation, most cities have implemented various parking costs for various locations. For example, if you want to leave your car on the streets, you will have to pay more than going to regular parking. Not everybody wants to pay, so most of the street spots are free which at the same time prevents jams.
With digital applications, many parking places give information about their availability or vehicle spaces. When planning to go somewhere, you can simply see the parking situation, and adjust your moves by that.
Why is it important to address these issues on time
With the rise in population in the major cities, these problems will be even bigger in the future. For that reason, addressing them on time will prevent chaotic situations, and will make everyone’s life easier.
To keep the planet safe, it is best to incorporate alternative transportation methods and create infrastructure for them. In addition, improving the public transportation schedules, and implementing new lines will significantly reduce congestion and will make coming back from work less painful.