Owning any sort of transportation is a very essential in any town or city, and the Greater Toronto Area is no exception to it. Since Toronto is known for having amazing attractions, having a vehicle makes it easier for individuals to travel and visit all of them at once. In the last couple of years, the growth of Toronto’s population has increased extremely high. Therefore, the transportation system need to take an immediate action to accommodate this demand. Traffic congestion in the city of Toronto occurs mostly during the daytime, but in some rare cases occurs during night time.
Traffic that occurs during the daytimes causes delay and frustration to many individuals that are in a hurry to get to their destination on time. Buses, cars, delivery trucks, bicycles, and pedestrians compete daily for a share in the road at the same time. Been reported that the average delay per a peak traveler has moved from 45 hours in 2002 to 55 hours in 2010 each year. (Fredrick, 2010). It is also been predicted that the number of hours would certainly increase high within the next couple of years.
The reason behind why traffic congestion has been a major issue in Greater Toronto Area, it is because of constructions occurring at inappropriate timing, the increase of automobile uses, and the sharing of the roads with other kinds of vehicles resulting in confusion and standing traffic. These causes related to traffic congestion are major problems for travelers and need an immediate solutions to be eliminated permanently. Construction Soon as construction seasons begin, Torontonians faces the most traffic issues which occurs in major intersections and highways resulting in a high rise in traffic congestion.
Due to construction, the highways and roads are packed with not enough space for the cars to travel, this becomes an issue to cars that are trying to pass through tight spacing and having to constantly stop and go. Also, when the highways and roads are packed with a lot of vehicles, cars would compete for a spot in a small one to two lane road, causing a longer commute time for the public to get to their destination. Not enough space for cars results to a slow movement of vehicles on the road.
A fellow Torontonian car owner, who commutes to work every day has stated “It is hard for me to share the road with other vehicles as well as pedestrians at the same time, it made me feel as if the roads were uncoordinated and unsafe to drive on” (Payne, 2014). During construction, the contractors either closes down a lane or the whole entire road. The public that are unaware about the road closures, would all be heading together to a closer and easier route to get to their destination. If all cars chooses to take the same easy route, then another traffic would arise at that location.
When they close down one lane, the commuter would have to compete and share the lane, which would not be enough for many cars to enter at once causing traffic. Right before 2015, Toronto has invested in more than $550 million to improve the roads and structures (McAllister, 2015). Right after this has been brought to effect, they had to close down The Gardiner Expressway and Don Valley Parkway temporarily, which were one of the most important highways used on a daily basis for an individual trying getting to their destination.
This resulted in individuals starting to take alternative routes or having to share lanes with other vehicles, causing major traffic jams and longer travel time, instead of having a fast commute to their destination. City of Toronto members, have failed to coordinate the highways properly after these closure, and caused many confusion and frustration for commuters. Therefore during construction season, many individuals in the Greater Toronto Area faces many road closures and experience not enough space for them to travel to their destination on time.
Over Populated/ Increase of Automobile Use Greater Toronto Area is home to nearly two million people, and out of the two million people, 70% of them are automobile owner driving to work on a daily basis (Moore, 2014). As the population increases yearly, it also shows an increase of many different vehicles being in use, this being another major reasons behind traffic congestion. Over populated roads and highways during morning rush hour, causes many delays for people trying to get to work, meeting, school and etc.
A Torontonian spends a minimum of four to five hours of their time weekly stuck in traffic, due to slow movement of vehicles, 62% of the time individuals are late to work (Sewell, 2009). During, the winter seasons the numbers of hours would double, since the public would have to drive slowly due to slippery grounds. In order for the commuters to get to their destination on time they have to add an extra hour to their usual traveling time, in order to avoid any delays.
As vehicles continue to make immediate stops during rush hour without being cautious of other vehicles it results to major collisions throughout the Greater Toronto Area. In total, 40% of the collisions that occurred in Greater Toronto Area in 2015, was due to over populated traffic and not being able to come to full complete immediate stop on time (Phillip, 2015). If a collision does occurs the road must be closed, causing there to be one less lane for the cars to travel on.
After a major collision occur, the emergency crew are expected to be at the spot of the collision, but then again as the roads are overcrowded with vehicles it makes it difficult for them to get through to help. A fellow emergency crew member stated “It takes us up to 10 to 12 minutes to get to a collision on a highway, but due to the many vehicles on the highway at time of a collision it takes us up to 20 minutes to get them their help” (Boyd, 2009). Therefore due to the many vehicles on the road it makes it difficult for the emergency crew to help those who are injured in a collision.
This situation might result to an individual in the collision to face death from their injuries, since the crew would not be able to arrive at the hospital on time. In conclusion the overcrowded roads and highways in the Greater Toronto Area, leads to multiple delays all around our city, major collisions, and it causes many emergency crew to have difficulties trying to aid those who are injured. Solutions to Prevent Traffic There are many solutions to help prevent traffic congestions throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
In order to reduce traffic congestion in this situation, people should consider carpooling ith other employees that live close to them, meaning less cars on the road. Another efficient method along with carpooling would be taking the public transit, walking or biking to their desired destination. Rather than spending countless amount of time on the highway, stuck in traffic, using public transits would be a faster way to commute to work on time. In the year 2013, nearly 525 million people rode the bus to get to their destination, without having to face any major delays (Lewis, 2013).
Compared to the individuals who drive themselves to work through the traffic would be facing more delays compared to those who take the public transit to their workplace. During many people’s commute to work having cars parked on the side of a busy road, blocking partial parts of the lane, causes frustration for the drivers when they are forced to slow down and change lanes, extending their commute time. Having to change lanes suddenly while driving, causes major traffic congestions and immediate collisions (Vigar, 2009).
Due to this change in lanes, it causes many confusions not only to the driver, but to the vehicles behind them as well. In order to prevent this, cars should avoid parking on the side during rush hours, since people are in hurry to get work and would not have enough time to do a complete stop to switch change lanes. Another way to avoid major traffic congestion in our cities is by increasing the gas prices to a price where people would try to avoid the use of their cars.
A statistic shows that 40% of car owners have avoided taking their cars out during winter season, due to the increase of the gas prices (Kennedy, 2011). Instead of having owners waste their gas on heat and on their vehicle in traffic during winter, they can consider taking the public transit throughout winter. In conclusion carpooling or taking the public transit, avoiding unnecessary parking on the side of the road, and increase on gas price are efficient ways on saving time through traffic congestion in the Greater Toronto Area.
In conclusion, Greater Toronto Area faces many issues daily from traffic congestion. The issues caused in traffic congestion has been getting worse rather than better. Constructions on roads cannot be stopped, since the city is trying to make better infrastructure, longer and safer roads for the public to travel on. Instead doing constructions after rush hour would allow the commuters to not be stuck in traffic for a long period of time.
Having a packed highway and road, due to many vehicles would make it tough for vehicles to get through, especially for cars trying to exit the highway but can’t since lanes are over packed making it hard for them to get through. Both constructions and over packed roads and highway are both can result to possible collision, which have to be changed immediately. The city has to work on a method where the public with cooperate together to reduce traffic congestion and the public should also consider other option such as public transit for their commute to work.