UK's most congested regions revealed as it is ranked sixth most congested country in Europe.
London traffic delays rise in 2015
London was the most congested city in the world in 2015 so motorists, on average, wasted 101 hours in gridlock, the INRIX Traffic Scorecard revealed. INRIX – which considers its card a benchmark for measuring urban mobility - added that 101 hours was equivalent to over 4 days and a rise of 5.2 hours compared to 2014.
INRIX explained that the city's population exceeded 8.6 million in 2015, which was the highest since a peek in 1939. Bryan Mistele, President and CEO, suggested: “London is the victim of its own success”. He argued its robust jobs market and growing economy attract more people, construction and, inevitably, further traffic.
But Mr Mistele suggested that congestion could improve in the future. He said: “Transport for London is tackling this problem with its £4 billion Road Modernisation Plan. Whilst in the short term the roadworks from this initiative are frustrating for drivers, they are a step towards creating a more sustainable and modernised transport network.”
Congestion throughout the United Kingdom
Greater Manchester was the second most congested “metropolitan” area of the United Kingdom in 2015. Drivers wasted 51 hours which was 0.4 hours less than the previous year. Manchester was followed by:
- Belfast (38 hours / +0.9),
- Merseyside (37 hours / +0.3),
- South Nottinghamshire (35 hours +0.6),
- Birmingham and Black Country (34 hours -2.5),
- Avon & North Somerset (30 hours -0.4),
- Leeds-Bradford (29 hours +0.3),
- Coventry & Warwick (28 hours +0.3)
- South Yorkshire (27 hours -0.3).
INRIX explained that factors such as: increasing population, a strong economy – which grew 2.2% - and low unemployment – that fell to 5.1% - had an “adverse impact” on traffic in 2015. Consequences included more people travelling to work by road, plus any delays caused by a necessity to expand the network to keep-up with demand.
United Kingdom 6th most congested country in Europe
Despite London's status, the United Kingdom was only the 6th most congested county within Europe in 2015. Motorists, on average, wasted 30 hours which was 0.1 hours fewer than the previous year.
Belgium was the most prolific at 44 hours (-6.3). It was followed by: The Netherlands (39 hours / -1.5), Germany (38 hours / -0.7), Luxembourg (33 hours / -0.9) and then Switzerland (30 hours / 1.2).
INRIX explained that of the 13 European countries analysed, 70% were less congested in 2015 than 2014. It argued: “This can be attributed to a sluggish Europe-wide economy, with an average quarterly GDP growth rate of 0.3% in the second half of last year”.