Manila’s traffic congestion is second worst in the world, says report

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 30)— Manila has the second worst traffic congestion out of the 416 cities surveyed around the world, according to a report by a location technology specialist.

The Traffic Index 2019 by TomTom, which ranks congestion in cities worldwide, showed that Manila has a congestion level of 71 percent. That means drivers spend an average of 71 percent extra travel time stuck in traffic

The Indian city of Bengaluru topped the report with also 71 percent congestion level.

It was not clear why the two cities were not considered tied at the top spot. The report covered over 306 million kilometers of road data – both highways and non-highways-in Manila, and more than 114 million kilometers of road data for Bengaluru.

TomTom said Manila has 73 percent of congestion level in highways, while 70 percent in non-highways.

The report noted that the day of the week with the worst rush hour would be Friday especially from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“Travelling after 7 PM on Friday could save you up to 5 hours per year (for a 30 minute commute),” read the report.

Meanwhile, data by TomTom also showed that April 19 last year had the least traffic in Manila, while August 16 had the most traffic.

The report said that Filipinos lost 10 days and 17 hours for driving during rush hour over the year. Further, 29 minutes are added per 30-minute trip in the morning rush, and additional 38 minutes per 30-minute trip while driving in the evening.

TomTom said that it calculated the baseline per city “by analyzing free-flow travel times of all vehicles on the entire road network” for 24 hours and seven days a week throughout the year.

“We perform calculations for all hours of each day, so you can see how congestion levels at any time in any city, including morning and evening peak hours,” said the company.

According to a study of the Japan International Cooperation Agency, the country loses ₱3.5 billion daily due to traffic congestion. This could reach up to ₱5.4 billion by 2035 if it will remain unsolved.

Traffic has been a big issue especially last year when the Light Rail Transit 2 (LRT-2) caught fire. The incident made commuting more burdensome for the 200,000 passengers who ride the train daily.

However, the government maintained that there is no traffic crisis in Metro Manila.