Although the total number of cars registered in the Netherlands has grown by a million since 2005, the nuisance caused by road traffic has hardly changed. Speeding is still the main source of annoyance in urban as well as rural areas.
Speeding and illegal parking in top 3
For three in every ten people in residential areas, traffic-related problems are a source of great irritation. Speeding is most often mentioned as a problem that requires priority attention.
Illegal parking comes in third place and is a common problem for a quarter of the population. Noise pollution is in seventh place (14 percent) and aggressive behaviour in ninth place (12 percent); 3 percent of residents are troubled by traffic fumes. Other neighbourhood problems in the top 10 are not traffic-related.
Road traffic creates serious problems, but traffic-related problems have not increased since 2005, despite the fact that the number of private cars, commercial vehicles, motorcycles and mopeds in the Netherlands has grown substantially in recent years.
Traffic nuisance and growth Dutch car fleet
25 to 44-year-olds most annoyed
For people aged between 25 and 44, speeding, illegal parking and aggressive driving are the main sources of annoyance. Noise pollution is a source of annoyance across all age categories, but over-25s are more bothered than younger people.
Traffic nuisance by age
Most traffic-related problems occur in urban areas
Speeding is a frequent problem in urban and rural areas. All other traffic-related problems predominantly occur in cities where road traffic intensity is higher. The differences are also manifest between the various Dutch provinces. Unlike people living in densely populated areas in the provinces of North and South Holland, residents of the provinces of Drente and Friesland are least bothered by illegally parked cars, noise pollution and aggressive driving. With respect to nuisance caused by speeding, residents of the provinces of North Holland and Flevoland are below the nationwide average, while residents of the province of Limburg are above the nationwide average.
Leanne Houben and Henk Swinkels