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Traffic Congestion in Big Cities Essay

Traffic congestion is one of the main problems in big cities like London, New York, Copenhagen, and Delhi. The primary causes of it are high population and movement of people. With progress in engineering, humanity invents many initiatives to solve this problem. One of the that is public transport area, particularly Metro. The Metro is an underground railway system of the city. According to Business Traveler (2012) the oldest subway was built in London in 1836 and to date the London Metro is the first in the ten top metros of the world.

Ahead 2012, in top ten metros of the world there were included subways of Paris, Madrid, Stockholm, Berlin, and Tokyo after the London Metro respectively. The focus of this essay is an evaluating of the effectiveness of underground railway systems in reducing traffic congestion. In order to properly assess the efficiency of metro it is necessary to find, describe, and analyze the transport impact of the metro on car and bus traffic growth and evaluate city traffic in the near and distant future after building a metro.

The initiative of building underground railway system has a positive influence on car traffic congestion. According to Advani (2005) 20% of trips of cars, taxis, and other personal vehicles with an average length of 11. 5 km were shifted to the metro after the opening of the new subway stations in Delhi in 1994. The city movement by car has some difficulties like traffic jams and parking. Therefore some people prefer the metro rather than own car to avoid these difficulties; moreover building of the metro gives possibilities to car travelers for both short and long trips to be shifted to the underground.

In addition it can induce to change peoples’ behavior in favor of the metro and public transport in general. Vuk (2006) reports that car traffic started decreasing after the subway opening in Copenhagen, and continue shift to the metro due to developing subway system. Hence the increase of subway usage contributes to effective solving problem of road traffic overflow. As a result the underground subway system is effective initiative to reduce car traffic in the city. The city subway system has positive impact in relief of bus traffic.

The problem is that the bus system is unable to cope with large influxes of people, so bus system does not work effectively. The subway system can be solving of this problem. According to statistics of 1994 year, year of opening new part of subway system in Delhi, about 60% of all bus trips with an average length of 10 km were moved underground (Advani 2005). Comparing of the two public transport systems allow explain the distribution of passengers between bus and subway.

First of all, the metro is the system independent from other transport, there is no traffic congestion in the underground, so subway is one of the fastest city transports. The second point is that city the bus system is flexible. Some part of bus travelers can definitely change their routes, and other part can use bus-metro-bus system, because bus stops and metro stations are found in the same place. The third point is that conditions of convenience for passengers of the both subway and bus systems are approximately similar.

When comparing bus and metro systems by speed, flexibility, and convenience, it seems that bus trips can be easy changed to subway trips. Vuk (2006) reports that bus traffic has decreased by 21-26% in Frederiksberg, town of Copenhagen, after building of new subway line in 2004. Hence it shows us that the metro system helps organize effective work of the bus system. In addition metro and bus systems can function as an indivisible transport network and appear development of whole city public transport.

The effective work of public transport gives opportunity to car travelers change their personal transport to public transport as a result it reduce traffic congestion. The metro can be a reason of increase traffic congestion after a long time after the building because of its influence on city infrastructure and population. Vuk (2006) suggests that in new town Orestad, district of Copenhagen, have appeared 60,000 work places, 20,000 education places, 20,000 dwellings, and several offices of large companies over the next 20 years after metro stations’ building.

It shows that the infrastructure of any district with subway stations develop noticeable in different directions. “In the USA many studies which have examined the effect of new rail transit provision on property prices have generally found positive effects” (Roukouni 2012). Growing prices on real estate displays that importance of this part of the city has increased. Consequently improvement of meaningful of the district invariably leads to rising of the population there, which is one of the main problems of traffic congestion.

Actually, metro influence in regional infrastructure is positive effect for the city, but this benefit contributes to impeding of city traffic after long time after its building, it is negative impact in city traffic of the initiative. After comparing underground railway system with other city traffic systems and analyzing of metro impact in city infrastructure it could be conclude that subway is plenty effective initiative for solving problem of traffic congestion. There are two examined points to demonstrate it. First point is that subway has positive effect in situation with traffic congestion among personal transport.

Second point is that metro can effectively complement bus system, and take large part of bus travelers. However metro can be a reason of increase traffic congestion in distance future, because of its impact in city infrastructure and population. To avoid problem of impending it is necessary to create polices and combine all traffic systems: car system, bus system, and underground subway system in the single transport network to develop each system timely depends others. Finally, metro is reasonably effective initiative in reducing traffic congestion.


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