Almost every city has a big traffic problem. Everyday, we walk out of our apartments and step into the sidealk and see cars in front of us parked on both sides of the street, driving down the street, stuck in traffic, speeding and honking. Although some measures have been taken to improve the city traffic, the traffic problems are not totally solved. So other measures are being sought continuously. Some people suggests that more roads should be built in order to speed up the flow of the traffic, and others insists that more public bus routes are requirted in order to limit the number of private cars.
But building more roads must take up much land, which results in house shortage and destruction to the farmland , and limiting the number of private cars brings inconvenience for the people whose home are far from the bus stop. Therefore, efforts must be actively made to improve the city traffic. Before we take some measures to deal with the traffic problems, some causes that lead to them have to be recognized. To start with, vast population contributes to heavy traffic.
Although the chinsese government keep enforcing birth controll policy, study shows that, China’s population will increase by more than 10 million each year in the next ten years. Apart from dense population in cities, more and more rural labor workers are pouring into the city, which adds much pressure on the severe city traffic conditions. Moreover, some people are not aware of the importance of obeying traffic regulations, especially for those people who couldn’t drive because they couldn’t share the same feeling with drivers when travelling on th roads. They think it is easy for drivers to control the vehicles.
The second reason falls on increasing vehicles, especially growing private cars going with improving living standard. In previous years, a car was a consumer goods that Chinese families did not even dare dream of owning, but cars are now becoming more accessible to the masses However, the rate of increase of the road far lags behind the rate of increase of the car. As a result drivers have to compete with each other in case of delay or missing an important meeting, and some careless drivings are very common. The last but not least reason is unscientific road design.
Although more roads have been built and some roads are broadened, without reasonable road design the traffic congestion and accidents are not likely to be avoided. For example, some road are not devided into the lanes for vehicles, nonvehicles and pedestrians traveling on their own lanes. Besides, if some broken road are not repaired in time, they will slow the flow of the traffic, and traffic congestion will occur easily especially at rush hours. Now that the causes for heavy traffic are organized, some solutions must be made in order to alleviate the traffic problem.
Concerning a great amount of people and the increasing cars in the urban area, some people suggest that we should restrict the grow of the private cars. But if we control the cars we control the transportation which again hindder economic activity. In some international metropolises, such as Paris and Tokyo, the volume of private cars far exceeds the number in Beijing. However, 60 to 80 per cent of citizens in large cities in Europe or the United States travel on public transport, a rate two or three times that in Beijing.
So both car owner and drivers should have traffic consciousness. So it is advisable to promote the advanced public transportation while encouraging person trips instead of car trips. We should open up more bus rutes and to equip the bus with advanced transportation monitoring system to adjust to the differenct traffic conditions in every minute. If a person can take a bus conveniently and safely anywhere and anytime with less expense, who like to drive the costly cars? As for pedestrians, we should have a sense of safety first.
Crossing the road under red lights or walking on the vehicle lanes are very risky. With regard to the problem of traffic system, it is not easy to predict that the under being built roads will be effective in transporting for more than 100 years, but scientific and foresightful transportation system including road desigh are needed in order not to waste too much money for rebuilding the roads. relevant departments should focus on the rational layout of the traffic network, including metro lines, flyovers, platform bridges and pedestrian underpasses.
For example, road intersections take much responsibilty to the traffic jam. One traffic jam in a intersection will affect traffic on several other routes if traffic administration departments lack a comprehensive management system for traffic flow. So we should learn from other countries, building an advanced informational system for drivers to get information of the traffic is another way to let them consider taking alternate routes, and deveoping advanced traffic monitering system to contral the traffic and deal with urgent happenings.
Acturally, no sole way above can solve the traffic problems completely, and the present methods are far enough to cope with the fast speed of traffic development. So other kinds of effective measures are required. The problem from heavy traffic may not be fully understood. We have no idea after 50 or 100 years if we have space to walk or live, if we can breath freely outside. Anyway, attention to safety and harmonious living environment is a top priority.