So, it got me to thinking. What if congestion were terrible all the time. What if we limited traffic to a couple of main throughfares, and only allowed it off into residential areas for access. Would more people cycle? Just to get away from the nightmare traffic? Can we do an experiment somewhere with this? What is the tipping point at which people start to cycle? It is down to journey time?
Wishing congestion on others merely to promote cycling is myopic, stupid, anti social and self defeating.
1. Perpetual congestion may well drive people out of their cars but it is not given, IMO unlikely that it would drive them to cycling. A motorcycle or scooter being more likely.
2. Such anti car attitudes are what make the majority ( and with good reason ) dislike cyclists and dismiss them as weirdos.
3. Congestion increases pollution which harms everyone which means YOU too.
do tell us how you would propose to reduce congestion.
Firstly I am not a traffic planner, ministry of transport official or anything else with any professional link to the subject. So as a layman here goes:
1. There is no single silver bullet solution to congestion, I also suspect that no complete solution is possible. Rather the solution is one of lessening the problem and of mitigating its effects through many measures, each of which may contribute in a small way, ie. the salami slicing type solution.
2. The prime drivers of congestion are too many people concentrated in too small a geographic area, commuting and deliveries.
3. In the past there used to be something called regional policy that aimed to encourage businesses to move out of the capital, this was I beleive discontinued in the 80s. I think that such a policy should be reinstituted and not merely in order to ease congestion (which it would to a very small degree).
4. Outer London is not severely congested outside of the rush hour, congestion being caused primarilly by commuters, central London however, seems to be permanently congested. Home working for all or part of the week being technologically possible for many occupations ought to be encouraged as it could greatly ease congestion.
5. There seems to be a fashion for people to have their internet purchases delivered to their place of work. Were employers to ban such deliveries a great number of delivery vans would be taken off our most congested streets.
6. Shops could be restricted to accepting deliveries of stock overnight thus removing many vans and HGVs from our streets at peak times.
7. Build more motorways, widen and improve existing ones, increase motorway speed limits. The UK has the most congested motorways in Europe not because we have more cars but because we have the most inadequate trunk road network. We need to encourage through traffic off local roads.
8. Institute a high daily charge for lorries for entry to cities during working hours. The objective being to encourageHGVs to stick to by pass roads and ring roads and to restrict necessary city entry eg. deliveries to times outside of the working day.
9. Congestion charges for cars for entry to city centres (as presently in London), the daily charge probably needs to be raised a bit.
10. Further investment in public transport, preferably rail not bus.
11. More subsidy for public transport to create lower fares encouraging more use.
12. Encourage walking and cycling as a means of short distance transport.
13. Encourage and facilitate rail freight, get transport of bulk goods off the roads.
There you go...a top of my head answer, many other additional measures must also be possible.