GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. – The Center of the American Experiment (CAE) has launched a campaign highlighting the high level of traffic congestion in the Twin Cities metro area.
The Twin Cities think tank is making transportation policy a focus of their initiatives this summer. The public information campaign features billboards, radio ads, and bumper stickers aimed at calling attention to the increasing traffic congestion problem in the Twin Cities metro area.
Last year, CAE released a report last year titled Twin Cities Road Congestion: It’s No Accident, highlighting the flawed policies that has led to increasing traffic congestion in the metro area.
According to CAE’s traffic congestion fact sheet, the number of hours the average Twin Cities driver sits in traffic has quadrupled from 1982 to 2014. In 2016, the Twin Cities was rated 21st in the nation for the most congested roadways. This increase in traffic congestion has been largely driven by “poor, politically-motivated decisions by unelected bureaucracies.” The report focuses on the Metropolitan Council in particular.
“In fact, it appears that the rapid growth in congestion is partly, if not mainly, due to government policies aimed at promoting alternatives to driving, rather than at relieving congestion,” CAE’s report reads.
As the body responsible for planning transportation within the Metro area, the Met Council is expected to provide solutions for easing the traffic congestion. However, in their 2030 transportation plan, the Met Council admits that “congestion will not be eliminated or significantly reduced” in the Twin Cities area. Instead of focusing on measures that would increase the capacities of the roadways in the Metro area, the Met Council has directed their attention towards providing alternative modes of travel. This includes a heavy emphasis on public transportation like transit lines and buses, as well as advocating for the use of bicycles for travel.
According to CAE President John Hinderaker, the solution for Twin Cities traffic congestion lies not in increasing public transportation, but expanding on the “inadequate system of highways and roads” in order to provide adequate lanes for the amount of traffic.
“The message is simple but powerful: the problem with traffic in the Twin Cities, which is much more congested than in other comparable U.S. cities, is an inadequate system of highways and roads,” Hinderaker wrote in a post regarding the new campaign. “Minnesotans need to use their vehicles to get where they need to go, and the only way to ease bottlenecks is by providing adequate traffic lanes. Bicycles and exorbitantly expensive fixed rail lines are never going to do the trick!
To read more about CAE’s traffic congestion campaign, click here.