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Study finds Los Angeles most congested city in North America

Jul 10 2012

Study finds Los Angeles most congested city in North America

~ TomTom launches quarterly Congestion Index to identify and address congestion hot spots in the United States and Canada ~

Lebanon, NH, July 10, 2012 – TomTom today launches the first quarterly Congestion Index that accurately identifies and analyzes traffic congestion in major cities across North America. The report, initially covering 26 cities, finds Los Angeles to be the most congested city in North America. On average, journey times in Los Angeles take 33% longer than when traffic in the city is flowing freely and 77% longer during evening rush hour. The TomTom Congestion Index, including individual city reports, can be found at www.tomtom.com/congestionindex.

The TomTom Congestion Index is the world’s most accurate barometer of congestion in urban areas. The Index is uniquely based on real time travel data captured by vehicles driving along the entire road network within the select cities. TomTom’s traffic database contains over six trillion data measurements and is growing by five billion measurements every day.

The Congestion Index compares travel time during non-congested periods (free flow) with travel times in peak hours. The difference is expressed as a percentage increase in travel time, representing the congestion level. The top ten most congested cities, ranked by overall congestion level, between January and March 2012 were:

    1. Los Angeles, 33%
    2. Vancouver, 30%
    3. Miami, 26%
    4. Seattle, 25%
    5. Tampa, 25%
    6. San Francisco, 25%
    7. Washington, 24%
    8. Houston, 23%
    9. Toronto, 22%
    10. Ottawa, 22%

“Over the years, with the help of our customers, we have built the largest and most accurate database of travel times in the world,” said Harold Goddijn Chief Executive Officer of TomTom. “When we combine this travel database with our detailed real-time traffic information and routing technology, we can not only pinpoint congestion, but can guide drivers away from congested areas onto faster routes.”

“Even when only a percentage of drivers use a different and faster route, the available capacity on the entire road network increases, which benefits all drivers,” Goddijn added TomTom’s Congestion Index also compares congestion levels between January and March 2012 with the same period in 2011. Based on this analysis, Seattle saw the biggest increase in traffic congestion, while Houston, Ottawa and San Francisco also saw increased levels of congestion. Conversely, Edmonton, New York, Boston, Minneapolis and Toronto experienced a reduction in congestion levels.

Notes to Editor

About the TomTom Congestion Index

The methodology used in the Congestion Index compares travel times during non-congested periods (free flow) with travel times in peak hours. The difference is expressed as a percentage increase in travel time. The Index takes into account local roads, arterials, as well as highways. All data is based on actual GPS based measurements.

A comparison is made for the travel times during the quarter and this is compared with the same period a year ago.

As well as assigning and ranking the overall congestion levels of 26 cities, the report analyzes the congestion levels in cities at different times of the day and on different days of the week. TomTom analyzed capital cities as well as cities with a population of over 800,000.

Individual city reports include more detailed information such as the most congested day, average free flow speed, time delay per year for commuters and congestion levels on main and secondary roads.

A separate European Congestion Index report is also available.

To download the European or North American Congestion Index report go to www.tomtom.com/congestionindex.

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