Scotland's Transport Delivering Improvements: Transport Indicators for Scotland

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Scotland's Transport: Delivering Improvements: Transport Indicators for Scotland

4. ROAD TRAFFIC CONGESTION

Tackling road traffic congestion in and around Scotland's major metropolitan areas is the overriding transport challenge that faces the Scottish Executive. If we do nothing to tackle this problem, road traffic is predicted to increase by up to 27% over the next two decades 4, with much of this increase in and around our four main cities. Congestion is already hampering our economy and damaging our environment. It costs businesses and individuals both time and money, it increases air emissions and reduces the quality of life of many on a daily basis. In tackling congestion, we recognise that there is no single solution that will be applicable in all circumstances. This is why we are investing in a package of measures including: improving and modernising public transport; changing attitudes; making more effective use of the existing road network; targeted road improvements; and the promotion of walking and cycling for shorter journeys. We are striving to reduce the volume of discretionary private car use, are encouraging commuters to use public transport and will improve journey time reliability for those using the motorway and trunk road network through targeted improvements.

The Scottish Executive is developing a congestion indicator and has commissioned research to determine an appropriate methodology for monitoring trunk road congestion. This is a precursor to implementing a monitoring regime which will begin monitoring and reporting from 2003. The intention is that this will be based on a methodology which will allow monitoring and reporting on the severity of delays at the height of peak periods to monitor peak trends; the duration of the peak periods, in order to monitor peak period spread or contraction; and the difference between journey times in congested and free-flow conditions.