Causes and cost of trafﬁc jams in Kampala
Mwanje Mambule, Dan
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This article investigates the causes and cost of trafﬁc jam in Kampala, through a survey of 291 road users. Narrow roads, indisciplined drivers, poor urban planning, limited car parking and concentration of most economic and social activities in the city were found to be some of the major causes of trafﬁc jams. Travellers lose between 8 and 23 hours every month in trafﬁc jams, with car travel speeds falling from an average of 28 km/h when there is no jam, to between 8 and 14km/h because of trafﬁc jams. Trafﬁc jams could also be lowering the country’s GDP to the tune of UGX 55-163 billion per year due to lost productive time while stuck in trafﬁc jams. To alleviate trafﬁc jams, the article recommends a variety of mitigation strategies from building ﬂyovers and improving the quality of alternative routes, to improving trafﬁc management operations, with congestion pricing believed to likely have the most dramatic effect on trafﬁc congestion. The article further recommends objective involvement of all key stakeholders in the process of determining mitigation policy options, team-working and coordination amongst the agencies responsible for trafﬁc control in the city, and conducting economic analysis for all policy options and prioritizing based on their return on investment and contribution to productivity.