A report which looks at traffic data from 416 cities in 57 countries named Bengaluru as the number one city for the worst traffic in the world.

Study confirms what Bengaluru always knew City has worlds worst traffic congestion
news Traffic Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 14:35

Ten days and 3 hours — if you live in Bengaluru, that’s how much time you probably spent in rush hour traffic in a year, according to a new report by Tomtom traffic index. In that time, you could have knitted 61 hats and 11 sweaters, watched 215 episodes of Game of Thrones and completed 49 500-piece jigsaw puzzles. 

Bengaluru’s traffic has put the city on the global map, becoming the number one city for the worst traffic congestion. According to a report by Tomtom traffic index, which looks at traffic data from 416 cities in 57 countries around the world, Bengaluru had 71% traffic congestion last year.

Comparatively, Mumbai had 65% congestion, Pune had 59% congestion, and Delhi is at 56%: an improvement of 2 percentage points from the previous year.

Bengaluru’s traffic is a constant headache for its motorists and residents, with social media becoming an outlet for jokes to cope. The traffic in the city has even previously foiled a terrorist attack.

The report noted that Bengaluru’s worst traffic day was August 20, 2019 and its best day was April 6 of the same year. From a weekly perspective, Fridays between 7 pm and 8 pm are the worst for rush hour traffic, with congestion reaching 100 to 120%. 

The second most traffic congested city in the world is Manila, in the Philippines. The remaining top five include Bogotá in Colombia, Mumbai, and Pune. While Manila also has 71% congestion, Bengaluru was higher on the list because of its 107% daily congestion, beating out Manila by a slight margin.

Citizens and activists from Bengaluru have been demanding better public transportation in the city to combat the chronic traffic troubles in the city. The buses in the city from BMTC hardly caters to the needs of the population in Bengaluru, estimated at 12.9 million people, with only around 6,500 buses in operation. The Karnataka government has announced that they plan to add another 6,000 buses to the bus fleet in a phased manner.

Read: Bengaluru set to add 6,000 buses in phased manner, will double fleet

Only recently did the Karnataka government announce that the city would have a suburban railways system, after an extended citizens’ campaign for it, “Chuku Buku Beku”. The proposed project will have 81 stations to connect the city through the already existing railway lines in the city.

Read: K'taka govt approves suburban rail project for Bengaluru, will have 81 stations

The Bengaluru metro is also being constructed and expanded across the city, which is expected to bring down the traffic in the city considerably. However, the metro has consistently missed deadlines to complete the projects in the city, making the affair more expensive and adding to the congestion in the city, even as many major roads are affected by metro construction activities. Bengaluru currently has two metro lines, at a total reach of 42 kms, along with 40 stations.

Meanwhile, the metro authority in the city, BMRCL, put out a proposed master plan recently, which includes the controversial elevated corridor project. Experts and activists have repeatedly pointed out that building more flyovers only increases the traffic rather than reduce it, because of ‘induced demand’; which is a phenomenon where private vehicular traffic only increases due to the existence of infrastructure to support it.

Read: Bengaluru Comprehensive Mobility Plan a 'backdoor’ to elevated corridor?

Bengaluru, you're killing me: How the city's traffic has made me an angry person 

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