Comment 28855

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted February 20, 2009 at 08:59:38

Frank,

The venerable Todd Litman of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute (VTPI) just published an excellent study on induced demand and generated traffic.

http://www.vtpi.org/gentraf.pdf

He opens the paper with:

"Traffic engineers often compare traffic to a fluid, assuming that a certain volume must flow through the road system. But urban traffic may be more comparable to a gas that expands to fill available space".

He concludes:

"Generated traffic has three implications for transport planning. First, it reduces the congestion reduction benefits of road capacity expansion. Second, it increases many external costs. Third, it provides relatively small user benefits because it consists of vehicle travel that consumers are most willing to forego when their costs increase."

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