Could Kiwis Solve Auckland’s $2 Billion Traffic Woes?
Auckland is the 47th most congested city in the world this year. And despite still being relatively far from the top, traffic in New Zealand’s biggest city costs it about $2 billion each year. The situation is so bad that even it’s taken a toll on the Kiwis’ productivity. Everybody is spending an extra 45 minutes a day on the road — or the equivalent of four working weeks a year.
It’s a far cry from the figures of three years ago. In 2014, Aucklanders spent only an extra 12 working days a year in traffic. This growing problem is prompting experts to look at its causes and try to find solutions.
Rising Population, Bad Roads and Irresponsible Driving
According to experts, the increasing number of vehicles hitting the road is the main cause of worsening traffic congestion. The area’s growing population is partly responsible for this. For instance, new housing developments in West Auckland and Hobsonville put 10,000 more cars on the Northwestern roads.
It’s not the sole culprit though. Bad, potholed roads and irresponsible driving could also cause accidents that could also jam the streets.
Solutions for the Worsening Traffic
The high cost of traffic is prompting economists from the Auckland Council to push for solutions. Motorists can do their part by following road rules in order to avoid causing accidents and jamming the highways. Meanwhile, builders need to hire efficient compactors and use quality materials to ensure that the road will not develop cracks or potholes that could cause mishaps.
Kiwis could turn to their bicycles to help relieve Auckland motorways. Cycling is becoming the most efficient mode of travel to and from work for people who live in the city suburbs, in fact. There’s more to come with this initiative. The Auckland Transport is investing $200 million in building and improving cycle paths. In fact, a new path from Glen Innes to Auckland through the Orakei Basin will be completed in 2019.
There are many ways to alleviate Auckland’s roads. If the city can solve its traffic woes, productivity could increase by up to 30%. People, then, are urged to do what they can to help. After all, a free-flowing motorway does not only save time — it could help improve the economy too.