IBM did a global study on motorists and how they feel about their communte. Here is an excerpt of their report:
– Overall, traffic has gotten worse in the past three years
The daily commute in some of the world’s most economically important international cities is longer and more grueling than before imagined, reflecting the failure of transportation infrastructure to keep pace with economic activity, according to IBM’s first global Commuter Pain study released today.
IBM surveyed 8,192 motorists in 20 cities on six continents, the majority of whom say that traffic has gotten worse in the past three years. The congestion in many of today’s developing cities is a relatively recent phenomenon, having paralleled the rapid economic growth of those cities during the past decade or two. By contrast, the traffic in places like New York, Los Angeles or London has developed gradually over many decades, giving officials more time and resources to address the problem.
For example, the middle class in China is growing rapidly, with the number of new cars registered in Beijing in the first four months of 2010 rising 23.8% to 248,000, according to the Beijing municipal taxation office. Beijing’s total investments in its subway system are projected to be more than 331.2 billion yuan by 2015 as the city expands the system to more than double its current size, according to Beijing Infrastructure Investment Co., Ltd. The city plans to invest 80 billion yuan in 2010 in building its transportation infrastructure.
Overall, though, the study paints a picture of metropolitan-area commuters in many cities struggling to get to and from work each day. For example, 57% of all respondents say that roadway traffic has negatively affected their health, but that percentage is 95% in Beijing.
Similarly, 29% overall say that roadway traffic has negatively affected work or school performance, but that percentage rises to 84% in Beijing.
IBM Commuter Pain Index: Beijing wins with the highest commuter pain index!!!
IBM compiled the results of the survey into an Index (called Commuter Pain Index) that ranks the emotional and economic toll of commuting in each city on a scale of one to 100, with 100 being the most onerous. The Index reveals a tremendous disparity in the pain of the daily commute from city to city. Stockholm had the least painful commute of the cities studied, followed by Melbourne and Houston (which tied) and New York City. [Beijing wins with the highest commuter pain index reaching the highest possible level of pain of 99 out of 100!!! Melbourne is one of the best cities with 17]
“Traditional solutions — building more roads — will not be enough to overcome the growth of traffic in these rapidly developing cities, so multiple solutions need to be deployed simultaneously to avoid a failure of the transportation networks,” said Naveen Lamba, IBM’s global industry lead for intelligent transportation. “New techniques are required that empower transportation officials to better understand and proactively manage the flow of traffic.”
31% of respondents said that during the past three years traffic has been so bad that they turned around and went home. The percentage in Beijing, however, is 69%, the high for the survey [Beijing wins again]
The Commuter Pain Survey was conducted by IBM to better understand consumer thinking toward traffic congestion as the issue reaches crisis proportions nationwide and higher levels of auto emissions stir environmental concerns. These events are impacting communities around the world, where governments, citizens and private sector organizations are looking beyond traditional remedies like additional roads and greater access to public transportation to reverse the negative impacts of increased road congestion.
This year marks the first global Commuter Pain survey. IBM previously conducted the Commuter Pain survey in the United States in 2008 and 2009.
IBM is actively working in the area of Smarter Transportation using a worldwide team of scientists, industry experts and IT services professionals to research, test and deploy new traffic information management capabilities in cities around the world. Findings from the Commuter Pain Survey will be used to assess citizen concerns about traffic and commuter issues; expand solutions like automated tolling, real-time traffic prediction, congestion charging, and intelligent route planning; and serve as a basis for pioneering innovative new approaches to traffic mitigation.