dcsimg Transport is key for prosperity - Ramboll Group

Transport is key for prosperity

Congestion and inadequate public transport are familiar problems in modern cities, where population growth leads to clogged roads and new urban areas poorly linked to the city centre and vital facilities. Europeans are grappling with long hours of waiting on the roads. 

By Kristine Barenholdt Bruun


Long hours sitting in traffic and failure to get to school or work  on time are the most direct  consequences of gridlock, but poor infrastructure will eventually have much broader effects on our cities and impede positive development: “Our transport systems influence  most aspects of community life. They are the means for moving people, goods and services around our cities and regions, and play a  significant role in shaping growth patterns, facilitating economic prosperity and influencing the character and liveability of our communities,” explains Alan Pauling, Group Market Director of Transport at Ramboll, continuing:

“If people have trouble getting where they want to go, our cities will lose resourceful people, suburbs become isolated and life and community quality reduced. The result can be extremely painful – not only economically, but also socially and environmentally. Public transport, cycling and walking, provide great local community benefits.”

Ramboll used unique indicatorderived evaluation tools to plan the layout and operations of the future railway traffic in Helsinki, Finland

Image: Ramboll used unique indicator derived evaluation tools to plan the layout and operations of the future railway traffic in Helsinki, Finland

A need for holistic traffic planning

The future infrastructure challenges that our cities will face are difficult to forecast, as is the extent of population growth or the city area that will undergo the greatest expansion. Despite these uncertainties, however, it pays to create thorough long-term traffic plans and to take into account all aspects of urban life and transport solutions. Alan Pauling rounds off by saying:

“It is important to think about people and why they need to move, and then think about the mode. We have to see cars as a secondary priority. We need roads, but providing cities with other alternatives is more sustainable, healthier and creates a more liveable city than expanding roads does.”

The five most traffic-congested cities in 2013

  1. Moscow, Russia
  2. Istanbul, Turkey
  3. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  4. Warsaw, Poland
  5. Palermo, Italy

According to the TomTom Traffic Index, these are the five cities that experienced the sharpest increases in travel times between non-congested periods and peak periods. Cities in Asia are not included in the index due to insufficient data.

Source: The TomTom Traffic Index 2013.


Peter Heymann Andersen
Peter Heymann Andersen
Managing Director, Transport
T+45 5161 8454