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Stockholmers spend more time commuting than on holiday: report

28 May 2012, 16:13

Published: 28 May 2012 16:13 GMT+02:00

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“We think it’s unreasonable. It’s clear that it’s inefficttive that we’re putting more time into sitting still in queues instead of being free or working,” said Maria Rankka, the CEO of Stockholm’s Chamber of Commerce (Handelskammaren) to the Svenksa Dagbladet (SvD) newspaper.

The average commute time in the greater Stockholm area is 34 minutes each way, according to a study carried out by engineering consultancy WSP at the behest of the chamber.

The report points to the public transport’s low average speed as a reason to why it takes so long for Stockholm residents to travel between their homes and the office.

Taking public transport means a commuter will be travelling on average 20 kilometres an hour, whereas car drivers can enjoy an average of 36 km/h.

Accoring to Rankka, the solution to the long journey times lies in expanding Stockholm's underground metro system.

In addition, the study revealed that taking the car is no longer considered to be the status symbol it once was, and attractive office locations in the city are likely to be closer to train stations than car parks.

“Because there is a continuing growth in travel and as space is limited, there must be a growth in public transport. It’s an effective way to travel, especially on the metro, and many people want to use it,” she told the paper.

An expansion of the Stockholm metro lines has been listed as the most important future plan for the chamber of commerce, plans which include extending the green line to Nya Karolinska and Solna, just north of Stockholm.

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“It’s in the metro that one should invest the most money. Many people can travel with it and in a city that’s growing, it gives a large capacity in the transport system when one invested under the ground,” she told SvD.

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Your comments about this article

18:08 May 28, 2012 by Abe L
All thanks to the incompetent and clueless people at the stockholm office for infrastructure planning and building. Every time they add infrastructure it's to little to late. You can't add a single lane to a 4 lane express way if it's congest inside out, you need to add at least 4 more.

If cars are no longer considered then where does the permanent endless queue of traffic on Essingeleden come from?
19:07 May 28, 2012 by Opinionfool
How does that compare with other capital cities? Back when I worked in London I spent a minimum of an hour each way daily --- that's an hour according to the timetable but reality was closer to an hour and 20 minutes per journey. Unless my maths is completely wrong that means I was timetabled to spend the equivalent of close to 12 weeks/year commuting; or actually 16 weeks/yr because of all the regular delays. I'll take the Stockholm 7 weeks over the London 16 any time.
19:52 May 28, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
Silly zero-eights. There's plenty of space out in the rest of Sweden, there's no reason to flock to Stockholm like sheep.
21:03 May 28, 2012 by NickJT
I'm retired now but for most of my 40 years working I was blessed with not having to commute longer than 45 minutes each way. The shortest commute I had was 7 minutes each way when living in Middle East for almost 5 years. In that job I actually had time to pop home for lunch, picking the children up from school and delivering then back there all within the hour I had. Bliss.

During my time I've also been able to work from where I need to be/want to be meaning that the idea of having to go into the office each day was seen by my enlightened employer as unnecessary when I could do what I needed to to that day elsewhere. I know not everyone has such jobs but why hasn't this idea of working from where one needs to be caught on in a big way considering that we have all the technology required to keep in touch? If companies really broke with the tradition of insisting staff come to work to sit in an office so that their bosses can keep an eye on them and make sure they do a full days work and instead measure their performance on the job in terms of results/achievements regardless of where they sat we would eliminate a lot of this pointless/life wasting commuting.
21:17 May 28, 2012 by johan rebel
Am I ever glad my commute is usually under 30 seconds.
21:19 May 28, 2012 by dizzymoe33
How about just getting in line you know "first to come, first to be served"?! Then you can save lots of time by not standing in line to take a number to go back and stand in line again? Just an idea
11:53 May 29, 2012 by gpafledthis
This makes it easy to understand why swedes hate swedes !!
16:29 May 29, 2012 by Spuds MacKenzie
34 minutes a day is nothing! When I lived in the USA my commute to Philadelphia was about an hour a day and about 70 minuted per day when I lived in San Francisco. I'll gladly take the Stockholm commute anyday!
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