According to a study published recently by the American company Inrix, drivers in Luxembourg City spent an average of 33 hours in traffic jams in 2016. This result puts Luxembourg City in 134th place. Esch-sur-Alzette, another town in the Grand Duchy included in the study, fares better, with just 21 hours spent stuck in traffic jams. It ranks 350th on the list.
To draw up its ranking, Inrix analysed the road traffic situation in 1,064 towns in 38 different countries. Inrix accumulated 500 terabytes of data from 300 million different sources, covering 8 million kilometres of roads.
Compared with the major cities at the top of the list, the cliché of Luxembourg City as a congested capital clogged by its road traffic needs to be moderated. In comparison, for example, the inhabitants of the city of Los Angeles spent 104.1 hours in traffic jams, the inhabitants of Moscow 91.4 hours, and New Yorkers 89.4 hours.
In Europe, the ranking is led by the major cities in Russia. That does not mean that the big cities of western Europe are unencumbered. Londoners spend an average of 73.4 hours in traffic jams, while Parisians manage to waste 65.3 hours.
Overall, cities close to the Grand Duchy fared rather better than Luxembourg City. Metz is in 944th place, with 6.6 hours of traffic jams. Thionville is in 724th place, with 10.3 hours of traffic jams a year, and Saarlouis in 669th place, with 11.4 hours of traffic jams.
Two main factors may explain the difference between Luxembourg City and these examples. Firstly, Luxembourg City has a high ratio of cars per household, and secondly, more than half the people who work in the Grand Duchy are cross-border workers, and they need a means of transport. Given the particular circumstances of the Grand Duchy, the Government is investing in improving and extending public transport (examples include the tram project and a car-sharing app).
(article written by the editorial team of the portal luxembourg.lu)