October 15, 2012, 12:00 PM
If you happen to live in Montreal or Toronto or Vancouver, you're probably convinced that the traffic congestion in your city must be the worst anywhere. In which case you would be almost right.
According to the TomTom Congestion Index (created by GPS navigation system company TomTom), Vancouver is the second-most congested city in North America, with Montreal ranked fourth and Toronto fifth.
The rankings are based on the average increase in travel times on each city's streets and highways during periods of congestion, compared to when traffic is flowing freely, over the second quarter of 2012.
That figure was 33% in Vancouver, 28% in Montreal and 27% in Toronto.
Vancouver's higher overall ranking was based on its higher congestion level on city streets (37%) rather than highways (20%). The city/highway figures for Montreal were 31%/26% and for Toronto, 33%/22%.
Stated another way, the time lost to traffic congestion for a driver with a 30 minute commute each way would be 87 hours over the course of a year in Toronto and Vancouver and 92 hours in Montreal.
Of the 26 cities studied in North America Los Angeles was the most congested (34%), with San Francisco ranked third (29%).
Ottawa ranked 12th (22%), Calgary 16th (20%) and Edmonton 25th (14%).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gerry has been an automotive journalist for more than 20 years. He is a former automotive engineer and three-time winner of the AJAC Automotive Journalist of the year award.
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