Volume 2002 Number 76
  • E-ISSN: 16840348


In recent years, and particularly since the early 1990s, rising transport demand and road traffic have led to increasing congestion, delays, accidents and environmental problems, particularly in large cities. This explosive increase has been the result of greater access to cars (as the purchasing power of the middle-income classes has risen), easier access to credit, falling retail prices, a larger supply of used cars, population growth, a decline in household size and an unstructured approach to urban transport policy. Transport in the largest cities consumes some 3.5% of the region’s GDP, partly as a result of traffic congestion, which affects both car and public transport users and which produces a loss of economic efficiency and other negative effects for society. Without seeking to propose specific solutions, this article analyses what congestion is and what the consequences of this modern urban scourge are for city dwellers’ quality of life.

Related Subject(s): Economic and Social Development

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