In recent years, traffic jams on major Beijing roads have become
more commonplace and frequent. So much so that the very first thing
people do when they get up in the morning is figure out how to get
to work without getting stuck in traffic.
Although the city's road network has been and continues to be
expanded, it is still unable to meet ever-increasing traffic
demands. The rapid increase in the number of automobiles,
especially privately owned cars, is a major contributor to growing
traffic pressures in Beijing.
The situation is so serious that some people have likened the
city at rush hour to one big parking lot; everything is at a
standstill. Riding a bicycle or even walking gets one to one’s
destination much faster than driving there. When traffic grinds to
a halt on the roads, cyclists and pedestrians casually weave their
way between cars and buses.
Beijing's growing traffic pressures can be described as being
"one big headache" for its residents and city planners. Efforts to
reduce traffic congestion in the city are not only the
responsibility of the hosts of the 2008 Olympic Games, but also the responsibility
of the central government and ordinary citizens. So while the city
works on improving its traffic facilities, think about smarter ways
to travel within the city. Get a bicycle, for instance!