Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Traffic in Melbourne

from w
On Tuesday Peceli and I had a task to do in Camberwell, Melbourne, which would normally involve a trip of a bit over one hour by car. But this was peak hour in the morning and it was raining heavily. Then from Laverton to the West Gate Bridge all vehicles crawled, started, stopped, for about forty minutes. The return trip was bad also with very heavy rain and a continuing flow of traffic.

So the following article in today's Age is rather incorrect, in my opinion. I think that driving in Melbourne can be extremely frustrating. To say that Melbourne is second best for motorists is crazy!

I wonder how far down the list Suva comes as driving there is pretty bad because the drivers are disrespectful of others, to put it mildly. I remember one taxi driver, after being cut off suddenly when a car veered ahead of him, yelling out in a falsetto and then chasing the car up to the next lights, still yelling, until we told him to calm down and get us up the next hill or so safely to Namadi Heights.

Commuting pain more of a niggle
July 1, 2010
MELBOURNE is second only to Sweden's capital Stockholm for a stress-free drive into work, a survey of 8200 motorists in 20 cities around the world has found.
IBM, which sells automated tolling, traffic prediction and congestion charging systems, has released its third ''commuter pain'' survey. Drivers in five continents were asked how stressful their drive to work was, and its impact on their health and lifestyle.

The survey ranked each city based on the economic and emotional toll of being stuck in traffic. Stockholm had the least painful drive of the cities studied, followed by Melbourne and Houston (ranked equal second), then New York City. Twenty-six per cent of Melbourne drivers said there was nothing frustrating about their trips. And the longest that drivers in Melbourne said they had been stuck in traffic, over the past three years, was 30 minutes - the shortest of any world city. The morning gridlock on Melbourne's worst bottlenecks such as the West Gate or Bolte bridges or the Eastern Freeway, paled in comparison with Moscow, where drivers said they had been stopped in traffic for up to 2½ hours.

In Beijing, 248,000 new cars were registered in the first four months of this year. In that city, 69 per cent of drivers have encountered traffic so bad in the past three years that they turned around and went home.

Drivers across the globe were asked what they would do with their time if free-flowing traffic reduced their travel time: 16 per cent said they would spend more time at work.

IBM's John Hawkins said that while Melbourne had well-managed roads, a booming population would mean the challenge of keeping the city's roads working would get tougher. ''You can't build your way out of congestion, you build a new road or a tunnel and it gets filled,'' Mr Hawkins said.

Australian Bureau of Statistics figures released yesterday showed Melbourne's population was growing more rapidly than any city in the country. Melbourne's population may be between 6.5 million and 7.5 million in 2051, the ABS predicted.



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