Peak hour traffic surveys reveal need for smarter choices

There are many reasons for initiating peak hour traffic surveys, and one of those is to discover just how busy our roads get during this time. When travel is slow and journey times are longer, people become more frustrated, pollution increases and residents and workers may even start to look for somewhere else to live and do business.

Case study: Bradford

A recent report in the Telegraph and Argus, Bradford’s local paper, says that some roads see an average speed of less than 15mph during rush-hour traffic, with the busiest road averaging just 10mph. These roads are the key routes in and out of the city and morning traffic includes commuters and school traffic. The added pressure on the roads increases pollution, adds to the damage on the road itself and makes for a miserable start to the day.

To try and combat this problem, Bradford is teaming up with other local authorities across West Yorkshire to draw up a regional plan to tackle congestion. Currently, a real-time traffic monitoring system is being tested, which can control traffic signals based on the amount of traffic on the roads, and link up with sat nav systems to direct traffic away from areas that are already bottlenecked. Other ways to reduce the traffic include adding more park and ride options at the outskirts of the city, and planning with rail partners, who are adding extra carriages to certain trains in the future.

The councillor managing transport issues for Bradford said that the city needed to concentrate on easing choke points around the area, and on encouraging people to move from the one-person-one-car habit so that they can make smarter travel choices.

Keeping an eye on the traffic

It’s important for all local authorities to keep a constant watch on traffic movement and build-up in their areas. Whether traffic changes seasonally, with school holidays or students arriving at university, or whether it’s affected by large housing developments or new retail facilities, the consequences to the life and health of an area with constantly clogged-up roads can be serious.

Regularly auditing traffic flow, journey times, pedestrian travel and parking arrangements help local authorities to plan ahead, and to have the data they need to forecast potential traffic issues relating to local development plans.

Traffic surveys from RDS

At Road Data Services, we conduct a wide range of traffic and pedestrian surveys, supplying high-quality data that enables our clients to make informed decisions. We use the latest technology and design the survey to meet your needs. To find out more, or to arrange a survey for your next project, please contact us today.

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