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Annual study shows cities losing the race against traffic gridloc k growth

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  • Lanyon, Ryan
    http://tti.tamu.edu/media/releases/2004/mobility.stm Annual study shows cities losing the race against traffic gridlock growth You can find the full report
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 8, 2004
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      http://tti.tamu.edu/media/releases/2004/mobility.stm
      Annual study shows cities losing the race against traffic gridlock growth
      You can find the full report online at <http://mobility.tamu.edu/>.
      For release:
      September 7, 2004
      For more information:
      Tim Lomax, 979-845-9960 or
      David Schrank, 979-845-7323
      In the effort to catch up with the effects of traffic congestion, American
      cities are falling farther behind with each passing year, according to
      20-year trends announced on Tuesday.
      The 2004 Urban Mobility Report, published by the Texas Transportation
      Institute, shows traffic congestion growing across the nation in cities of
      all sizes, consuming more hours of the day, and affecting more travelers and
      shipments of goods than ever before. We can only expect more of the same,
      say the study's authors.
      "We can see pretty clearly what 20 years of almost continuous economic
      growth can do to us," says Tim Lomax, one of the study's authors. "If we're
      lucky enough to sustain this growth and the funding levels and options do
      not increase from current trends, we shouldn't be surprised if we see even
      more congestion."
      The TTI study ranks areas according to several measurements, including:
      * Annual delay per peak period (rush hour) traveler, which has grown
      from 16 hours to 46 hours since 1982,
      * Annual financial cost of traffic congestion, which has ballooned
      from $14 billion to more than $63 billion since 1982 (as expressed in 2002
      dollars), and
      * Wasted fuel, totaling 5.6 billion gallons lost to engines idling in
      traffic jams.
      This year's installment increases the number of urban areas studied from 75
      to 85, and includes all urban areas exceeding a population of 500,000.
      The report also measures the mobility improving contributions of public
      transportation service and techniques to improve roadway operating
      efficiency. These and other techniques can be used - nationally and locally
      - to more successfully reverse a national trend of ever-worsening traffic
      problems. Researchers say that the problem has grown too rapidly and is too
      complex to be addressed by a single solution. In addition to new road and
      public transportation projects, they say we need more efficient use of
      current roadways, better demand management, and a diverse set of land use
      options.
      "We're facing an increasingly urgent situation," Lomax says. "To make real
      progress, it's critical that we pursue all transportation solutions - short
      range, small scale projects and policies, mid range efficiency programs, and
      longer term, more significant projects and programs that require more
      planning and design time."
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