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Traffic Automotive

Hallelujah! A papal visit sans traffic snarls

The Pope’s tour of the Americas has been widely anticipated on a number of levels, and will undoubtedly draw massive crowds wherever he goes. Yesterday, he was in Washington, D.C., a city famous for its VIP motorcades that shut down major thoroughfares.

So, how did the papal visit affect the roads in the nation’s capital? Apparently, locals took all the traffic warnings and road closure information very seriously and, as it turned out, the city wasn't as congested as everyone was expecting.

The Washington Post interviewed residents to know how they planned their morning commute to avoid traffic congestions and how they were pleasantly surprised by how fast they actually got to work.

We have previously shown how our traffic simulations suggest that traffic-aware navigation is a more successful strategy for removing traffic jams than adding more capacity to the roads. As a result, strangely enough, closing down existing roads can potentially make traffic smoother.

This time, our traffic team dug in to track congestion (or lack thereof) in Washington during the papal visit. The following time lapse shows traffic before, during and after the visit. Are you in one of the cities the Pope is visiting? NYC is getting ready right now and if Washington is an example, we can only suggest you be informed and use traffic-aware navigation.

 

Morning rush hour from 6am – 9am
Morning rush hour from 6am – 9am

 

 

Continuation of the morning traffic, 9:20am until 11am, right before the Papal parade
Continuation of the morning traffic, 9:20am until 11am, right before the Papal parade

 

 

The Catholic University area from 1pm – 4pm during the Pope's visit
The Catholic University area from 1pm – 4pm during the Pope's visit

 

 

Evening rush hour from 4pm – 6pm
Evening rush hour from 4pm – 6pm

 

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