Highway robbery

This idea, and the images, comes from http://www.denvergov.org/Blueprint_Denver/1323photo.asp (now gone, sadly) and is the most graphic representation I've seen of the incredible space-inefficiency of motor transport. We are told that congestion is due to bus lanes, cyclists, pedestrians and lorries taking up the road. This series of four simple pictures shows the real culprit.

Highway-robbery-1.gif Congestion

Thirty-five cars, stationary on the road. If they were moving at 30mph each car would need at least 10m of headway, so this is about as densely packed as cars get.

Highway-robbery-2.gif Cargo

This is the cargo. Thirty-five individual drivers.

Highway-robbery-3.gif The Invisible Bus

This is how much space they'd take up in a bus

Highway-robbery-4.gif Mixed Mode

Here we have our thirty-five people getting on with life, some going into town on the bus, some cycling, some walking, a couple of small cars and a taxi.

Now, who was the problem, again?