Paris is the third most congested city in Europe behind only London in second and Moscow, a runaway leader, new data shows.
Motorists in the French capital spend on average 65 hours a year in traffic, according to statistics from Inrix global traffic scorecard and the Department for Transport analyzed by GoCompare. Londoners spend 73 hours a year in jams while for Muscovites the figure is 91 hours, nearly four days.
Two UK cities made the top 25, with Manchester in 18th place (39 hours), while four Russian cities were in the top 10. Russia had five in the top 25, while Germany had seven, with Munich worst in ninth place (49 hours).
Of the 25 cities suffering from congestion, 10 are capitals. One of the reasons Moscow’s congestion is said to be bad is because of the privileges afforded to motorcades of the rich and famous in the city, which can grind other traffic to a halt.
Traffic in Paris is currently at the centre of a debate over the future of the Right Bank, pedestrianised in 2016 to provide “ space to breath and walk. In February a court ruling raised the prospect of the 43,000 cars a day diverted by its closure returning to the Georges-Pompidou Expressway on the northern side of the Seine.
Parisian authorities have vowed to fight to retain the Right Bank for strolling residents and visitors.
The French capital is not the only city with pedestrianisation on its agenda.
In London, the second most congested city in Europe, according to the study, removing traffic from Oxford Street. Transport for London is examining the results of a consultation on a scheme that would see the city’s busiest shopping thoroughfare free of cars, and traffic directed elsewhere.
Edinburgh is also preparing to ban cars from parts of the city centre to make it more people-friendly.
Council leader Adam McVey said the city was looking at having “less private cars and better public transport.”