TomTom, the GPS device manufacturer, has again published a traffic congestion report. Vancouver is, apparently, as bad as it gets.  Worse than Toronto and lots of other cities.

But Charlie Smith in the Straight has some problems with the TomTom Traffic Index.

Is Vancouver’s traffic congestion really as bad as TomTom claims?

. . . . In 2012, the Seattle-based Sightline Institute’s Alex Broner and Clark Williams-Derry wrote that TomTom’s congestion measure “looks only at car speeds, not at total travel time for people“.

“In fact, compact cities with short commutes can actually get penalized in these rankings!” Broner and Williams-Derry declared.

This year, TomTom has ranked Vancouver’s traffic as worse than that in New York, Toronto, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Dallas–Fort Worth. Last year, Vancouver’s congestion was rated worse than what drivers experience in Los Angeles.

These types of reports are great news for Premier Christy Clark, who’s eager to justify a $3.5-billion, 10-lane bridge to replace the George Massey Tunnel. They’re also wonderful weapons to wield against promoters of more cycling infrastructure.

But seriously, anyone who thinks that driving around Vancouver is tougher than taking the Gardiner Expressway from Toronto to Mississauga really needs to have their head examined.

Big thanks to Chris Keam (frequent PT commenter) for this on how to answer headlines that end with a question mark:

Betteridges Law Of Headlines (Wikipedia)

“Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.” It is named after Ian Betteridge, a British technology journalist, although the principle is much older. Like all similar “laws” (e.g., Murphy’s Law), Betteridge’s law of headlines is intended as a humorous adage rather than always being literally true.