A study: opening of the D5 motorway literally saved the traffic in Plzeň
The motorway by-pass of Plzeň, of which the last sector was opened in October 2006, has brought to the town of Plzeň a relief to freight and passenger traffic by tens of percent. The motorway has taken away the load and on the same time it absorbed all of the additional traffic from the past years. We can see the evidence for this in the study of “Správa veřejného statku města Plzně” (Administration of public estates of the town of Plzeň)
A provisional by-pass was opened in December 2003, the last sector with a tunnel Valík and so the whole D5 was opened in October 2006. During this, the intensity of transit traffic in Plzeň was measured in the direction from East to West. "In September 2003 we counted 3200 trucks, in March 2004 just only 430 and in April 2007 even mere 176 trucks," says Alfred Brunclík, the Managing Director of the Road and Motorway Directorate CR.
A comparison of the intensity of traffic for the 24 hours of a working day in monitored places in 2003 and 2006 (last fields are Difference and Difference in %):
While the traffic in Plzeň started to decline (for example in 2003 there were 30 thousand cars a day on the Rokycanská road and now it is 20 thousand), the intensity of traffic on the motorways was rising rapidly. In 2004 there was 15 thousand cars, now it is 25 thousand. All these vehicles would otherwise have to go by the Rokycanská road. The motorway has therefore absorbed a great number of vehicles, Plzeň fortunately hasn’t even experienced the enter of Czech Republic to the European Union, in terms of the total increase of truck transport in 2004. The study also proved wrong the fears that the truck transport would move to the city after the toll was introduced.
Another interesting points from the study (measurements taken on 26th of April 2007):
- Overall, in the total of the monitored profiles, 78 300 vehicles entered the city in the period of 24 hours, the ratio of the freight traffic (vehicles with the total weight over 3,5 tons) makes up 11,4% that is 8 900 vehicles, out of which there were 2 550 trucks (3,2%). There are over 600 buses (except those of Urban Mass Transportation) coming into the town a day (0,8%).
- Out of the 78 300 vehicles, which enter the city, only 14% is the transit traffic, the rest is terminating traffic. There are 11 000 transit vehicles a day, out of which 8 900 are private (81%), 1 200 carriers without the trucks (11%) and 900 trucks (8%). The ratio of the transit is lower for the private cars (13%), and higher for the freight traffic (24%).
- If we were to monitor the ratios of the transit traffic for the trucks on separate entrances, the most transit would be found at both entrances on the north of the town (I/20 Karlovarská and I/27 Plaská) - 28% and 33%. Domažlická and Rokycanská entrances have today their ratios lower (24% and 23%), even though still in 2004 the ratios of the transit freight traffic were around 35%.
- The most dominant source and destination of the freight traffic in Plzeň is presented by the industrial areas of Borská pole inc. The Škoda premises. In the day of the study, 360 trucks ended here and in the Prazdroj brewery ended 160 trucks.
A summary of the main indicators of the finishing construction of the motorway:
- A general decline of traffic in Plzeň and the surroundings
- A shift of the traffic to the motorway
- Proving wrong the fears that the truck transport would shift to the city after introducing the toll
- Generally a great contribution of motorways to the traffic