Istanbul has just been crowned king of the traffic jam. The metropolis on two continents has the most congested streets in Europe, according to new research.
TomTom announced the results of its latest Congestion Index measuring traffic congestion in European cities between April and June 2012. The latest Congestion Index, now covering 58 European cities, finds Istanbul the most congested city in Europe.
On average, journey times in Istanbul are 57% longer than when traffic in the city is flowing freely and 84% longer during morning rush hour.
TomTom’s Congestion Index is the world’s most accurate barometer of congestion in urban areas. The Index is uniquely based on real travel time data captured by vehicles driving the entire road network. TomTom’s traffic database contains over six trillion data measurements and is growing by five billion measurements every day. The overall Congestion Level for all the European cities analysed between April and June 2012 is 23%, a drop of 4% compared to the same period in 2011.
The top ten most congested European cities, ranked by overall Congestion Level, between April and June 2012 were:
1. Istanbul 57%
2. Warsaw 45%
3. Marseille 42%
4. Palermo 40%
5. Rome 34%
6. Paris 34%
7. Stuttgart 33%
8. Brussels 33%
9. Hamburg 32%
10. Stockholm 30%
“This Congestion Index gives the general public, businesses, industry and policy makers accurate and unbiased information about congestion levels in urban areas,” said Ralf-Peter Schäfer, Head of Traffic at TomTom. “Because TomTom’s traffic information is so precise, we can pinpoint congestion trouble spots more effectively. When combined with real-time traffic information and routing technology, traffic starts to be routed away from these congested areas, helping to ease congestion in cities and urban areas.”
The methodology used in the Congestion Index compares travel times during non-congested periods (free flow) with travel times in peak hours. The difference is expressed as a percentage increase in travel time. The Index takes into account local roads, arterials, as well as highways. All data is based on actual GPS based measurements.
As well as assigning and ranking the overall congestion levels of over 58 European cities, the report analyses the congestion levels in cities at different times of the day and on different days of the week. TomTom analysed capital cities as well as cities with a population of over 800,000. In addition, a selection of key cities with smaller populations was included based on their regional importance to the transportation network. The purpose of adding these smaller cities was to provide a better understanding of congestion levels within individual countries.
Individual city reports include more detailed information such as the most congested day, time delay per year for commuters and congestion levels on main and secondary roads.