According to the latest DfT projections the number of cars on Britain’s roads will increase from 28 million in 2010 to 38 million by 2040.
Assuming the rise is steady delays will increase by 114 per cent, the DfT believe, while average road speeds will fall by eight per cent. This would mean that at peak times 15 per cent of cars on major roads would be stuck in a traffic jam.
Its calculations are based on a 20 per cent rise in population and a rise in prosperity and living standards and economic growth. The level of congestion could be even greater if the cost of motoring continues to fall in real terms as cars become more fuel efficient.
With cars becoming more efficient the DfT believes the cost of motoring will fall by nearly a quarter by 24 per cent by 2040.
“With constrained road space, road traffic growth means greater pressure on the network and therefore higher levels of congestion,” the study notes.
How much traffic will grow will depend on what happens to the cost of motoring, the economy and how fast the country’s population increases. Even if population and economic growth are slower than most experts expect, road speeds will still fall by two per cent and 15 per cent of peak traffic would face congestion in 2040.
At the extreme end of the scale, the figures are even more dramatic with the DfT forecasting as much as 30 per cent of cars being stuck in traffic jams on major roads by 2040 if the cost of oil comes down at the same time as the population and economic growth soar.
One of the solutions to this problem is car-sharing.
Liftshare, with over 360,000 active members, provides the largest journey matching service in the UK by far. Whether it’s a one-off journey or your daily commute, a minimum of 75% of journeys find a match. If everyone shared their car – the predictions from the DfT for 2040 could be avoided.
Source: Telegraph – David Millward – Transport Editor
Adapted by Liftshare