TomTom Traffic Index: Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal rank as the most congested cities in Canada

Congestion rates drop in nation's three biggest cities

TORONTO, March 22, 2016 /CNW/ - TomTom (TOM2) today released the results of the TomTom Traffic Index 2016, an annual report detailing the cities around the world with the most traffic congestion. The report, released every year to help drivers, cities and transport planners understand traffic congestion, highlights trends and ways to improve congestion globally. The TomTom Traffic Index looks at the traffic congestion in 295 cities in 38 countries, and is based on 14 trillion data points that have been accumulated over eight years. 

The new report shows a change in the historical trend of increasing congestion in Canada with a drop noted in 11 of the 12 Canadian cities listed in the index. This means that the average amount of time drivers wasted sitting in traffic* declined over the last index. In Toronto, the average driver saved 11 hours not sitting in traffic congestion. For Vancouver, nearly four hours were saved, and in Montreal - almost half an hour.  

This traffic congestion decrease marks the first drop in Vancouver since 2010 and the first drop in Toronto and Montreal since 2012. TomTom experts attribute the improved congestion rates across the country to new government-led traffic management policies and investments in infrastructure.

Despite the improved rates, commuters in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal can expect to spend nearly 30 per cent extra time traveling due to congestion, which amounts to an average of 126 hours* of extra travel time per year – slightly more than five full days. The next most congested cities in Canada are Ottawa (26 per cent), Halifax (26 per cent) and Winnipeg (22 per cent).

The TomTom Traffic Index – now in its fifth year of public release –breaks down not only the best and worst times to hit the road but also which days are the most traffic-clogged – a great benefit for motorists looking to travel faster.

"We really want everybody to think about how they can lower the amount of time they waste in traffic every day – and to realize that we all need to play a part," said Ralf-Peter Schaefer, vice president of TomTom Traffic.

"We can help businesses plan smarter working hours to help their employees avoid traveling during rush hour. And we give drivers the real-time traffic information and smart routing they need to avoid congested roads and get to where they want to be, faster," Schaefer said.

TomTom, based in Amsterdam, has worked with travel planners worldwide, offering the traffic data to help enhance mobility plans, smart city strategies and public transit and infrastructure.

The information, gathered in part from navigational devices, also can be used by motorists at peak traffic periods to consider different departure times to avoid hang ups or to use other means of travel.

"Dare to follow a new route suggested by your navigation system," Schaefer said. "Consider other modes of travel – maybe the fastest way to get to work is by bike, on public transport, or even by foot."

Additional highlights of the 2016 TomTom Traffic Index for Canada:

  • Average overall congestion in Canada for the major cities is 25 per cent, with a decrease in congestion from 27 per cent over the last index
  • Congestion rates in 11 of the 12 Canadian cities listed in the index have improved with an overall decrease in congestion. Vancouver's congestion rate has decreased by one per cent, Toronto's by three per cent, and Montreal's by one per cent. Most notably, Winnipeg, listed as the sixth most congested city in Canada has a decreased congestion rate of four per cent. Calgary's traffic congestion rate has dropped by three per cent.
  • Based on populations of above 800,000, the most congested cities in Canada continue to be Vancouver and Toronto with the least congested city in Canada being Calgary
  • The average evening rush hour congestion rate in Canada is 47 per cent, down 10 per cent from the last index where a 57 per cent congestion rate was measured
  • Despite improved congestion rates, the average Canadian is reported to lose nearly 99 hours stuck in traffic
  • Thursday evening is the most congested evening commute based on the 12 Canadian cities in the index. Exceptions to this are found in Edmonton, Quebec, Calgary and Hamilton.

 

The TomTom Traffic Index, individual city rankings and the congestion levels can be accessed at http://tomtom.com/en_gb/trafficindex/ The portal also provides helpful advice on beating traffic and, for the first time, a selection of "Profile Cities" that provides insight into what they are doing to improve mobility.

Overall ranking of the 13 most congested cities in Canada in 2015 (Overall daily congestion level – extra travel time):

1

Vancouver

34%

7

Edmonton

21%

2

Toronto

28%

8

Quebec

21%

3

Montreal

26%

9

Calgary

19%

4

Ottawa

26%

10

London

18%

5

Halifax

26%

11

Hamilton

16%

6

Winnipeg

22%

12

Kitchener-Waterloo

16%

 

 

Ranking of the most congested cities globally in 2015 (Overall daily congestion level – extra travel time – population over 800,000):

1

Mexico City

59%

6

Bucharest

43%

2

Bangkok

57%

7

Salvador

43%

3

Istanbul

50%

8

Recife

43%

4

Rio De Janeiro

47%

9

Chengdu

41%

5

Moscow

44%

10

Los Angeles

41%

 

 

Ranking of the most congested cities in North America in 2015 (Overall daily congestion level – extra travel time – population over 800,000):

1

Mexico City

59%

6

Seattle

31%

2

Los Angeles

41%

7

San Jose

30%

3

San Francisco

36%

8

Honolulu

29%

4

Vancouver

34%

9

Toronto

28%

5

New York

33%

10

Miami

28%

 

 

Notes to editors

What does TomTom do to beat congestion?

Road authorities and local governments can use TomTom's traffic data to better manage traffic flow during the rush hour. We can help businesses plan smarter working hours to help their employees avoid travelling during rush hour. And we give drivers the real-time traffic information and smart routing they need to avoid congested roads and get to where they want to be, faster.

How does TomTom calculate congestion level?

Put simply, the Congestion Level percentage is the extra travel time a driver will experience when compared to an uncongested situation. To illustrate, an overall congestion level of 36% means that an average trip made takes 36% longer than it would under uncongested conditions.

About TomTom

At TomTom (TOM2) our mission is to make technology so easy to use, that everyone can benefit from it. We created easy to use navigation devices, helping millions of people to get where they want to be. Today, we continue to simplify the complex, making technology more accessible for everyone. We have four customer facing business units: Consumer, Telematics, Automotive and Licensing. We make easy to use navigation devices, sport watches and action cameras for consumers. We enable businesses with vehicles to more easily manage and improve fleet efficiency whilst increasing overall business performance with our Telematics solutions. We also offer a world leading real-time map platform that is powering innovative location based services and helping to make automated driving a reality for the automotive industry. Founded in 1991 and headquartered in Amsterdam, we have over 4,600 employees and sell our products worldwide.

Notes to editors

*Calculations of wasted time sitting in traffic are based on peak periods of traffic.

Schaefer continues: "Road authorities and local governments can use TomTom's traffic data to better manage traffic flow during the rush hour. We can help businesses plan smarter working hours to help their employees avoid travelling during rush hour. And we give drivers the real-time traffic information and smart routing they need to avoid congested roads and get to where they want to be, faster."

SOURCE TomTom

Image with caption: "Traffic Index 2016 (CNW Group/TomTom)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160322_C4003_PHOTO_EN_647877.jpg



For further information: Canadian Media Contacts: Meaghan Beech, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, Meaghan.Beech@HKStrategies.ca, (416) 413-4650; Karen Drake, TomTom, Karen.Drake@TomTom.com, (978) 405-1640; Global Press Office: Greg Morrison, TomTom, Global PR Manager, TrafficIndex@TomTom.com, +31 (0)6 52 59 00 28; Investor Relations: Bisera Grubesic, TomTom, Head of Treasury and Investor Relations, ir@tomtom.com, +31 (0)20 757 5194

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