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42% less traffic in Brussels than before lockdown

Credit: Brussels Mobility

Despite the traffic volume increasing on Brussels’ main roads because of the reopening of stores, there is still 42% less traffic on the road compared to a regular Monday before the lockdown.

Traffic continued to flow smoothly, as there was only a total increase of 8% in volume on Monday, according to figures from Brussels Mobility. In comparison, an increase of 20% was recorded during the first phase of the exit strategy on Monday 4 May.

“It is never easy to predict what people will do, but most of those that went to the shops apparently did not take their cars,” Inge Paemen, spokesperson for Brussels Mobility, told The Brussels Times. “Most of the pictures of the long lines that we have seen, such as at Ikea, were outside of the city,” she added.

The traffic volume on Monday morning, compared to a normal Monday before the lockdown, was 42% lower, according to Brussels Mobility, which measures the number of vehicles passing through a sample of Brussels tunnels each Monday during the morning rush hour.

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Brussels Mobility said it was not aware of any traffic jams or bottlenecks on the main roads, or around the construction site of the Leopold 2 tunnel or on the Rue de la Loi, of which one lane has been reserved for cyclists since last week, but is monitoring the situation regularly.

Additionally, a gradual increase in bicycle use has been measured. Since the weekend of 17 April, the number of bicycle journeys recorded has been higher than before the lockdown went into force. This is mainly due to frequent cycling as a recreational activity, according to Brussels Mobility.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times