Data scientists at the think tank, IDFC Institute, analysed over half a billion data points from Uber's 'Movement' tool between 2016 and 2018 to come up with some interesting figures.
One of its findings revealed that the average Mumbaikar wastes about 11 days stuck in traffic each year.
Further, the average time of commute on major routes in the city is over an hour, which is over double the averages of Singapore, Hong Kong and New York.
As compared to the 45 minutes needed for the 45-km trip from Shanghai's city centre to its airport, a 30-km trip from Mumbai's international airport to South Mumbai can take over one-and-a-half hours during rush hour.
The paper revealing this data, reviewed by The Indian Express, says that "long commutes are eradicating the economic productivity of India's financial capital".
The average travel time between two areas of a city, for a given time period, is provided by Uber's 'Movement' data, and commute routes between areas like Nariman Point, Lower Parel, Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC), Andheri East, Malad, Borivali and Chembur were plotted by the researchers.
The study used the average wage rate of the city (Rs 50 per hour) to calculate the economic cost of spending time in traffic, as opposed to working. It revealed that the average environmental cost to the city for every trip is Rs 17, while the average economic cost is Rs 145. In fact, due to congestion, additional fuel costs alone can go up to Rs 265.
Interestingly, the researchers quantified traffic leads to the labour markets in Mumbai becoming fragmented. For instance, someone who lives in Mumbai's northern suburbs like Borivali might just have to pay an additional Rs 350 per commute if they wish to work in midtown Lower Parel. Traffic might make them spend an additional Rs 1,325 per week on fuel.
In Mumbai, shorter distances do not always mean lower fuel costs.
The study further identified prominent traffic bottlenecks. For example, the route from BKC to Borivali significantly tightens up between Jogeshwari and Kandivali.
The study recommends more policy research behind the bottlenecks. It also recommends an 'Intelligent Traffic Management System' in the required areas.
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