This paper provides an overview of the conference on traffic congestion and suburban activity centers that was conducted by the Transportation Research Board Committee on Transportation and Land Development. The conference addressed two primary questions: "What can be done to relieve suburban congestion, particularly in and near major suburban activity centers?" and "If a major suburban activity center were built from the ground up, what should it look like?". The consensus was that there is currently no "vision" of a desirable activity center or arrangement of activities and infrastructure in the suburbs. Participants felt that one of the most serious problems in and near suburban activity centers, and in the suburbs themselves, is the relative lack of transportation system capacity. There was a recognition that there is a tremendous diversity of trip purpose at activity centers. A short list of characteristics that help to understand congestion was produced. The list included such characteristics as real versus preceived congestion, change, rate of change, perception of speed, amount of delay, predictability, tolerance of the public for congestion, and the action ignition point, referring to where or when the public comes to the point that they are fed up with the situation. Activities to mitigate suburban congestion were suggested, the important role of the state government was recognized, and research needs were identified.

  • Record URL:
  • Availability:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This paper appears in Transportation Research Circular No. 359, Traffic Congestion and Suburban Activity Centers. Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
  • Authors:
    • Lathrop, G T
  • Publication Date: 1990-7

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: p. 1-8
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00497241
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Sep 30 1990 12:00AM