The story appears on

Page A5

March 11, 2011

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Public Services

Increase in cars causes longer commutes

A GOVERNMENT report on urban traffic released yesterday shows that one in every five households in Shanghai owns a private car, following continual growth in car ownership.

The rise in cars means Shanghai drivers are taking longer to get to work than six years ago, the report said.

On average, a downtown resident in Shanghai spends just over 43 minutes on a one-way daily commute, -compared to almost 41 and a half -minutes in 2004.

The survey discovered that, on average, a commute by Metro and bus takes more than one hour, while a driver can get to work in 46 minutes.

Commuters traveling by taxis, two-wheelers or walking complete a trip within 30 minutes.

The transport authority surveyed over 230,000 locals, including 60,000 drivers and 60,000 households to -complete the study in 2010.

Cars are running slower compared to six years ago on downtown roads during daily traffic peaks, a condition of the sharp increase in private car ownership among locals, the study also showed.

Morning and afternoon rush hour driving speeds on main roads inside the Inner Ring Road have dropped to 16 kilometers per hour and 15km/h respectively - down 9 and 3 percent from 2004, when the authorities last carried out the survey.

Through upgrades and widening, road space in central zones have increased in area by 25 percent since 2004, -leaving little scope for future expansion, officials said.

In the meantime, the number of locally registered cars has doubled, -resulting in 55 percent more -traffic on a daily basis.

Officials said the city has seen an additional 124,000 -locally registered cars every year since 2004.

"The city's urban traffic condition is stable, but we are under great pressure to reduce congestion in face of soaring demand for road space," said Shen Xiao-su, a deputy director with the city's construction commission yesterday.

At present there are 1.36 million locally registered cars in Shanghai - including 1.01 million private cars.

If buses and a small number of motorbikes are counted, the total number of local-plate vehicles is 2.5 million.

"Now, an average local car drives 39 kilometers a day, about the length of the whole Inner Ring Road. About 1.3 times the distance traveled by counterpart traffic in London and 2.1 times that of Tokyo," Shen said.

Currently, about 743,000 sedans need to park in downtown neighborhoods, but there are only 471,000 parking spaces available.

Some residential complexes completed in the 1980s and 90s were designed with little or no parking facilities," Shen said. The shortage has caused many residents to take public parking spaces, which could cause emergency access problems.

The survey also found that in the morning rush hour, cars heading downtown on the North-South Elevated Road often run as slowly as 18km/h, cars traveling in the other direction could go as fast as 64km/h.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend