The car is often presented as a great technological find, the invention that revolutionised mobility with comfortable monthly fees; however, apparently, for about a hundred years, the car in the city has been accompanied by two uncomfortable travel companions: traffic and parking problems. Every morning, we wake up and know that we will have to fight in the jungle of city traffic, just to find a parking lot. In the chaos of everyday life, saving time and money and avoiding unnecessary stress is already an achievement.
For now, it seems that in no city in the world the problem of mobility has been solved without the unpleasant side effects of traffic and lack of parking: urban traffic consists of cars looking for parking, in an inefficient, costly and polluting vicious circle.
Searching for parking is an activity that, at the time we become drivers, we generally consider it a waste of time because it separates us from our occupations, such as spending leisure hours, returning home after a day of work or arriving on time to work. With the increase in cars and traffic, a “race to the parking lot” is unleashed more and more, which causes negative consequences for us and for the environment, in terms of stress and pollution.
Free parking makes traffic worse in two ways:
- They attract travellers by car;
- Urban traffic slows down due to car drivers who run in hopes of finding a free spot.
This is the result of an American study that also confirms the daily experience of those who drive in the city: when you arrive at your destination, you should always spend 10 to 20 minutes looking for a place to park. Here’s the complete document: Cruise to access the parking lot.
During peak hours, it is estimated that 15 to 30% of cars in circulation are looking for parking, which increases congestion. The problem is irresolvable, mainly because cars are too bulky to move around the city: to park 400 cars, one hectare of space is needed. If urban planning is planned to adapt to the car (wide roads, etc.), accidents increase and spaces expand, but without really solving the problem, because there are still places where traffic is attracted (commercial, industrial, and craft centres, entertainment venues, etc.) and the parking problem persists.
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