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Traffic Congestion in Europe: INRIX France Traffic Scorecard Provides Revealing Look at Traffic Congestion in Cities Nationwide

INRIX®, the leading provider of traffic information, released the INRIX France Traffic Scorecard, a comprehensive country-wide perspective and city-by-city analysis on traffic congestion. A comparison among six different countries found that Paris is the most congested city on the continent, followed by London. Germany’s biggest metropolitan area Ruhrgebiet comes in third.

Generally, Ile de France drivers spend more time in traffic compared to drivers in the UK, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. With many drivers paying over €1,44 at petrol stations and roads clogged with traffic congestion on average 70 hours a week across the country’s 25 worst bottlenecks, traffic continues to have a major impact on consumers, the French economy and the environment.

The scorecard revealed that the worst place and time to be on French roads is in Ile de France on Tuesday from 8:00- 9:00 where it takes nearly 52 percent longer on average compared to the same journey in uncongested conditions. Overall, the journey or Travel Time Tax1 (T3) for France was 14,3 percent, meaning that a random journey along urban area roads during peak weekday driving hours takes nearly 14 percent longer on average compared to the same journey would take in uncongested conditions. The T3 for France is the best among the countries analysed, well below the United Kingdom, Germany and the Benelux region

By analyzing traffic on major motorways in the country’s 27 largest metropolitan areas, the Scorecard provides a comprehensive snapshot into the intractable issues of urban traffic congestion. According to the report, the Top 10 Most Congested metropolitan areas in France2 and the worst hours are:
1. Paris/IdF: Drivers waste 70 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Tuesday 8:00-9:00
2. Lyon: Drivers waste 34 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Tuesday 8:00-9:00
3. Lille: Drivers waste 50 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Thursday 8:00-9:00
4. Limoges: Drivers waste 34 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Wednesday 17:00-18:00
5. Bordeaux: Drivers waste 26 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday 8:00-9:00
6. Rouen: Drivers waste 26 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Tuesday 8:00-9:00
7. Marseille: Drivers waste 27 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Tuesday 8:00-9:00
8. Grenoble: Drivers waste 33 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Friday 17:00-18:00
9. Nantes: Drivers waste 25 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Friday 17:00-18:00
10. Poitiers: Drivers waste 25 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday 17:00-18:00

“While traffic outside of the Paris region isn’t nearly as bad as in other European countries, the fact that eight of Europe’s Top 10 worst bottlenecks are located in Ile de France shows that traffic has a significant impact on the French economy, the environment as well as the mobility of its citizens,” said Hans Puvogel, General Manager, INRIX Europe. “Our business is built on knowing what’s going on with traffic day in and day out in 20 countries. The Scorecard, and the data powering the report, will contribute enormously to a better understanding of traffic congestion on French roads helping governments and businesses free people and commerce from gridlock.”

France’s Traffic Patterns & Worst Bottlenecks
The INRIX France Scorecard takes a micro look at traffic problems all across the country – zooming in on the total hours spent in traffic, worst day of the week for commuting and average speeds for the top 27 cities in France, along with hundreds of other details including the identification of the worst traffic bottlenecks the country’s drivers crawl through every day. Unique patterns evolving out of France’s traffic congestion include:
• Worst Traffic Day: Thursday
• Worst Week Day Morning: Tuesday
• Worst Commuting Hour: Tuesday 8:00-9:00
• Worst Afternoon Commute: Friday
• Best Week Day for Traffic: Monday
• Best Week Day Morning: Friday
• Best Week Day Commuting Hour: Monday 6:00-7:00
• Best Week Day Afternoon: Monday

In analyzing and ranking the worst traffic bottlenecks across France, The most congested segment (in all countries analysed in fact) is a 0,41 km section of the Boulevard Périphérique Extérieur at Porte d’Ivry (Junction 2) in Paris, which was congested on average 99 hours a week, with an average speed below 23 km/h when congested.

According to the report, the Top 10 Worst Traffic Bottlenecks in France are:
1. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte d’Orléans at Porte d’Ivry
2. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte d’Orléans at Porte d’Italie
3. Paris A 86 direction Champigny Sur Marne at Exit Rancy
4. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte d’Orléans at Porte de Sèvres
5. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte d’Orléans at Porte de Bercy
6. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte de Bercy at Porte de Saint Mandé
7. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte de Bercy at Porte de Charenton
8. Paris Boulevard Périphérique direction Porte de Bercy at Porte de Vincennes :
9. Lyon L’Autoroute du Soleil (A4) direction La Garde-Limonest at Quais de Saône – Vieux Lyon
10. Paris A 86 direction Champigny Sur Marne at the Exit Montreuil la Boissière

About the INRIX France Traffic Scorecard
The INRIX France Traffic Scorecard uniquely measures the country’s traffic congestion problem by going beyond the traditional limitations of road sensors and statistical sampling techniques to evaluate real-time traffic on almost every major metropolitan roadway in France. It leverages INRIX’s Smart Driver Network, the first truly national traffic data collection network based on a crowd-sourced approach to collecting traffic information.

Each data report from these GPS-equipped vehicles and devices includes the speed, location and heading of a particular vehicle at a reported date and time with commercial vehicles reporting every minute for up to 7 hours per day. With the world’s largest traffic network, INRIX generates the most comprehensive and timely congestion analyses to date, covering the 27 largest metropolitan areas and all of France’s major highways, interstates and limited access roads. INRIX then processes and blends other relevant traffic-related data such as road sensors, traffic accident and incident data and other resources to provide the most comprehensive and accurate traffic information available.

Rankings and scorecards of the Most Congested Cities in France, along with an executive summary of the report findings are now available at the INRIX France Traffic Scorecard website at euscorecard.inrix.com. The extensive data powering the INRIX France Traffic Scorecard is immediately available under license for further analysis and review by government agencies and commercial organizations including transportation industry organizations.

To learn more about the Scorecard’s findings, you can also register for a free webinar planned for November 10, 2010 at 11:00 a.m. GMT/6 a.m. ET where INRIX Vice President of Public Sector Rick Schuman and GM of INRIX Europe Hans Puvogel will provide a detailed review of key findings and INRIX traffic data can be applied to improving transportation planning, traffic management and measuring system performance.

Footnotes:
1 Travel Time Tax (T3): The methodology used to measure overall congestion and to establish Urban Area T3 for each of the weekly 40 peak period drive time hours enables the calculation of total France Urban Area congestion metrics, by hour, by morning and evening drive time, by day and overall.

T3 expresses the average amount of extra time it takes to travel relative to free-flow travel. A T3 of 30%, for example, indicates a 20-minute free-flow journey will take 26 minutes during the peak travel time periods, a 6-minute (30%) journey time penalty. For each road segment, a T3 is calculated for each hour of the week, using the formula T3= Reference Speed (RS) minus Hourly Average Speed (HS)/RS. Note if HS > RS, T3 is set to 0%. T3 is a direct derivative of Travel Time Index, a common metric used in congestion analyses.

2 Overall Congestion vs. Travel Time Tax (T3): Overall congestion quantifies and ranks the total congestion in a region. Larger regions tend to have more roads and more locations where congestion occurs, hence more overall congestion. Travel Time Tax (T3) equalizes all regions by dividing out the difference in the size of each region’s road network – giving a more driver centric view of congestion. For example, London and Birmingham have comparable T3 (25.0% vs. 24.3%) – this implies that an average commuter in both cities faces similar delays. However, London has roughly 5 times more people and more than 3 times more road miles of major highways. So at a system level London has much more overall congestion while individuals in both regions each face similar congestion levels.

An analogy is power consumption – the amount of power consumed in each home is similar to the T3; while the amount of total power consumed in a region is similar to overall congestion. Both measures – power used in each home (T3) and power used overall in the region (overall congestion) – are relevant and thus measured.

3: Based on a one-way uncongested commute of 30 minutes during peak travel hours

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