Four out of ten people bothered by traffic

11/03/2008 15:00

In 2007, 37 percent of people in the Netherlands reported being bothered by traffic in the neighbourhood where they lived. Most of the problems concerned speeding, but traffic noise and aggressive driving were also often reported. Residents in cities, and particularly in the forty designated ‘focus districts’, experience the most problems.

Most problems in cities

Traffic nuisance is experienced most in urban areas. Traffic intensity is higher in these areas than in other areas. In extremely urbanised areas, 43 percent of inhabitants say they experience problems caused by traffic. Inhabitants of the focus districts experience the most problems, nearly half of them reported traffic-related nuisance. These districts are all in strongly or extremely urbanised areas.

Traffic nuisance by degree of urbanisation, 2007

Traffic nuisance by degree of urbanisation, 2007

Speeding most annoying

People who drive too fast are the source of greatest annoyance among residents. Nearly three out of ten people in the Netherlands think people drive too fast in their neighbourhoods. For more than 10 percent of the population traffic noise and aggressive drivers are a source of great irritation. Traffic accidents are reported by 4 percent.

People who live in cities are more often bothered by traffic noise and aggressive driving than people who live in villages. They even report being bothered by traffic accidents twice as often as inhabitants of more rural areas. Speeding is just as common in cities as in rural areas.

Various types of traffic nuisance, 2007

Various types of traffic nuisance, 2007

Residents in focus districts experience more problems

All types of traffic problems are relatively more common in the focus districts than in other urban districts. Residents in these districts experience more problems with aggressive driving in particular. One quarter are very annoyed by such behaviour. This is twice as many as in other urban districts.

Traffic problems in focus districts, 2007

Traffic problems in focus districts, 2007

Fewest problems experienced in neighbourhoods with children

Fewer problems are experienced in neighbourhoods where many families with children live than in neighbourhoods with only few children. Traffic noise, in particular, is reported less often in these neighbourhoods, but aggressive driving and accidents are also less common. This is partly because families with children tend to live in non-urban areas where there is less traffic anyway. However, both in urban and non-urban areas the neighbourhoods with most children experience the fewest traffic problems.

Carin Reep