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Traffic Congestion in Europe: INRIX Germany Traffic Scorecard Provides Revealing Look at Traffic Congestion in Cities Across the Country

INRIX®, the leading provider of traffic information, released the INRIX Germany 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, German drivers spend more time in traffic compared to drivers France, but less than U.K., Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. With many drivers paying over 1,35 Euro at petrol stations and roads clogged with traffic congestion on average 34 hours a week across the country’s 25 worst bottlenecks, traffic continues to have a major impact on consumers, the German economy and the environment.

The scorecard revealed that the worst place and time to be on Germany’s roads is in Stuttgart on Fridays from 16:00- 17:00 where it takes nearly 50 percent longer on average compared to the same journey in uncongested conditions. Overall, the journey or Travel Time Tax1 (T3) for Germany was 19,7 percent, meaning that a random journey on roads in urban areas during peak weekday driving hours takes nearly 20 percent longer on average compared to the same journey in uncongested conditions. Germany’s T3 is slightly below the United Kingdom and Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg) regions, while more than 25 percent higher than France.

By analyzing traffic on major motorways in the country’s 35 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 Cities in Germany2 span all regions and the worst hours are:

1. Ruhrgebiet: Drivers waste 51 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Friday, 15:00-16:00
2. Hamburg: Drivers waste 44 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Friday, 15:00-16:00
3. Berlin: Drivers waste 35 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday, 8:00-9:00
4. Frankfurt am Main: Drivers waste 47 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday, 8:00-9:00
5. Köln: Drivers waste 57 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday, 8:00-9:00
6. München: Drivers waste 35 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday, 8:00-9:00
7. Düsseldorf: Drivers waste 46 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday 8:00-9:00
8. Stuttgart: Drivers waste 56 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Friday 16:00-17:00
9. Saarbrücken: Drivers waste 45 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Monday 7:00-8:00
10. Bielefeld: Drivers waste 25 hours per year in traffic3, Worst Hour = Wednesday 16:00-17:00

“This is the first detailed and factual report about congestion in Germany and it allows for a comparison of what traffic is really like and where it is the worst and when,” said Hans Puvogel, GM of 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 Germany’s roads helping governments and businesses free people and commerce from gridlock.”

Germany’s Traffic Patterns & Worst Bottlenecks
The INRIX Germany 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 35 cities in Germany, 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 Germany’s traffic congestion include:

• Worst Traffic Day: Thursday
• Worst Week Day Morning: Thursday
• Worst Commuting Hour: Monday 8:00-9:00
• Worst Evening Commute: Thursday
• Best Week Day for Traffic: Friday
• Best Week Day Morning: Friday
• Best Week Day Commuting Hour: Friday 18:00-19:00
• Best Week Day Afternoon: Monday

In analyzing and ranking the worst traffic bottlenecks across Germany, the most congested segment is associated with a major roadworks project, “Project Mittlerer Ring Southwest,”7 in Munich. It is a 0,58 km section of Heckenstallerstraße (Mittlerer Ring) heading west up to Höglwörther Straße, which was congested 97 hours a week, with an average speed below 23 km/h when congested.

According to the report, the Top 10 Worst Traffic Bottlenecks in Germany are:
1. Munich: The Heckenstallerstraße heading west up to Höglwörther
2. Bremen: The A1 towards Bremen near Ahlken
3. Hamburg: The A7 towards Hamburg near Hamburg-Bahrenfeld
4. Hamburg: The A7 towards Hamburg near Hamburg-Othmarschen
5. Köln: The A1 headed towards Euskirchen near Köln-Bocklemünd
6. Köln: The A59 toward Bonn near Köln-Porz
7. Bremen: The A1 toward toward Bremen near Krummhörens Kuhlen
8. Stuttgart: The A8 heading toward Karlsruhe near Höllberg
9. Munich: Heckenstallerstraße heading up to the Passauerstraße
10. Ruhrgebiet: The A52 toward Essen at Huttrop

About the INRIX Germany Traffic Scorecard
The INRIX Germany 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 Germany. It leverages INRIX’s Smart Driver Network, the first truly national traffic data collection network which uses a revolutionary 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 country’s largest traffic network, INRIX generates the most comprehensive and timely congestion analyses to date, covering the 35 largest metropolitan areas and all of Germany’s major highways, interstates and limited access roads. INRIX then processes and blends other relevant traffic-related data such as road sensors, traffic crash and incident data and other resources to provide the most comprehensive and accurate traffic information available.

Rankings and scorecards of the 35 Most Congested Cities in Germany, along with an executive summary of the report findings are now available at the INRIX Germany Traffic Scorecard website at The extensive data powering the INRIX Germany 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.

# # #
1 Travel Time Tax (T3): T3 expresses the average amount of extra time it takes to travel relative to free-flow travel. A T3of 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, Hamburg and Damstadt have comparable T3 (20,3% vs. 20,0%) – this implies that an average commuter in both cities faces similar delays.

However, Hamburg has more than 7 times more people and 10 times the amount of major highways. So at a system level Hamburg 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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