Merge Now Episode #4: Trevor Reed of INRIX on Traffic Trends

Mobility is inexorably linked to its context, so in order to understand where mobility is going you need to understand where traffic is going.

Merge Now

Over a century ago, when cars were first developed we did what we so often do when new technologies begin to mature: we let the run wild. The ensuing explosion of automobility solved some of the biggest problems cities of the time faced, most notably the horse droppings and corpses that plagued urban streets, but in the process we created a whole new set of problems.

One of the worst new problems that cars created was traffic, and as INRIX's Trevor Reed explains on this episode of Merge Now traffic isn't exactly going away. Working with the traffic data company's wealth of of information, Reed breaks down the findings in the latest INRIX Traffic Scorecard and quantifies how and where traffic affects our lives.

But today's traffic is about more than just your daily commute: it also holds a wealth of insights into how urban development affects and is affected by different mobility modes. By studying traffic we can start to understand the context into which new mobility technologies are emerging, where different modes can have the greatest impact and how to develop our cities in line with new and future mobility options. 

Armed with this data, perhaps we can avoid the pitfalls of the past. The more we understand cities and traffic the better we can target specific mobility challenges with new technologies, as well as anticipate the problems they will inevitably cause. With a lot of data and a little luck, the next century of mobility might just be deployed more intelligently and cause fewer unforeseen problems than we did during the last mobility revolution a century ago.