Drivers on roads in Bradford and Leeds faced the most traffic-clogged journeys in England over the last year, according to the results of a new survey.
Roads in the Bradford-Leeds area have been named as the most congested in England, and seventh in Europe, out of 31 cities researched in a study into traffic times by a satellite navigation company.
TomTom’s first quarterly Congestion Index suggests 28 per cent of Bradford-Leeds roads are regularly congested, slightly more than London with 27 per cent and Birmingham with 21 per cent.
The index compares levels between January and March 2012 with the same period in 2011.
According to TomTom’s study, the two areas have seen the biggest increase in congestion in that period, with a five per cent rise, placing them seventh in their table of most gridlocked cities in Europe, up from 19th in 2011.
However, Councillor Val Slater, executive member for planning, transport and highways, feels the findings of the survey are questionable.
She said: “We use data collected by the Department of Transport to assess congestion levels across the district and last year, Bradford was placed 56th out of 152 local authorities in terms of average speed in the morning peak period.
“Many cities experience traffic congestion at peak travel times. At these times of the day certain roads in Bradford are also very congested, but not all of them. Bradford Council and Metro, the West Yorkshire Transport Authority, are both working hard to relieve traffic congestion on roads.”
Among other projects, the Council hopes to introduce 10 buses per hour between Bradford and Leeds in a bid to get people out of their cars and onto public transport.
The index is based on real travel times data captured by vehicles driving the entire European road network and compiled from five trillion anonymous data measurements on TomTom’s servers.
Thomas Crompton, managing director of Thomas Crompton Developments Limited, whose drivers have everyday experience of the district’s roads, said the figures did not surprise him because he knew traffic congestion was a problem.
He said: “It is getting worse and worse. Anybody going home around half-four will know the main roads are terrible.
“I don’t know what the answer is. Perhaps more bus schemes. The Council are trying, but maybe more people using public transport is the only way.”