Beijing Traffic Congestion Reaches Breaking Point

All images chinaSMACK.

On several nights last week while cycling home I was caught in traffic jams around the Gongti area so bad that even my trusty bicycle couldn’t get through the melee. Two lane by-roads were transformed into four lane highways by cars lining up along spaces normally reserved for bikes and parked vehicles, which meant a single tricycle-transporter wedged between vehicles could render whole blocks completely impassable. This morning the Global Times confirmed my suspicions that Beijing’s traffic congestion has finally reached bursting point.

In an article headlined “Record breaking gridlock heralds holidays,” the Global Times wrote, “The morning rush hour gained a bonus hour Sunday, with more than 100 roads becoming congested on the first day that had no vehicle-license plate ban ahead of the two Chinese mainland holidays. But even Sunday's gridlock could not compete with the record-breaking 140 traffic jams of Friday night.”

They’re predicting even better news for the coming weekend, which will comprise working days due to China’s insane “holiday” schedule: “Authorities expect evening rush hour to last till after 9 pm, even 10 pm.”

The number of cars in Beijing hit 4 million last December and last month the People’s Daily claimed the city’s car fleet is now growing at an average rate of 1,900 cars a day, which means the capital will have around 7 million cars by 2015.

ChinaSMACK carried some images of last weekend’s chaos in a post last night. The post also carried this alarming claim about Friday night’s jams: "At 3:30 in the afternoon, a Route 68 bus departed Changqiao and didn't arrive at Liuliqiao until 8:30, 13 kilometers taking 5 hours."

Aint development grand?


Whoa - good thing I spent all weekend at home with the flu!

Jerry Chan, Digital Marketing & Content Strategy Director

wow... I had no idea it was that bad.. saw some of the congestion around the second ring road but! Glad i got my ebike

It used to take about 40 minutes to get from Haidian/ZGC to CBD even with traffic. Now it is frequently over 2 hours and at least twice in the last few weeks it has been close to 3 hours, and it seems to get worse with each passing week.

Keep adding those 1,900 cars per week. In about a year this city will be nothing but a parking lot.

Spent most of the weekend (at least about 3 minutes of it) listening to people talking about how it took them 2 hours to get from this place to that, 3 hours from this place to that, all journeys within the third ring road. I put it down mostly to the rain on Friday, but obviously the traffic situation is slowly becoming unsustainable.

Well, in the long run we can rest assure that it will be China that destroys China.

And the fun thing is most of those cars have only one person in them.

I love my planet Vulcan. I'm proud of being a Vulcan in the universe.

Harmony is a key ingredient for a harmonious society Lol

You create your own reality.

Correction to my previous post. The article said 1,900 per day, not per week.

I like being stuck in traffic for 2 1/2 hours next to a guy in a brand new Lamborghini. 250,000 Euro to go 12 km/h while chain smoking with the windows up and acid rain eating the paint.

fucking poor traffic system. It makes me lose patience.

No business too small, no problem too big.

I can't stand it anymore, I'm planning to buy a car next year

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Yes, let's buy a car and make the traffic problem even worse.

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