Today’s Editorial: Traffic grinds to a halt

The promise is being made once again to come up with a solution to harrowing traffic problems suffered by those trying to get into George Town from the eastern districts, especially in the mornings.

Many commuters have changed their habits and are leaving their eastern district homes even earlier than before Hurricane Ivan to beat the traffic into town.

But many North Siders, East Enders and Bodden Towners are still finding themselves sitting behind the wheels of their vehicles, burning costly fuel and getting nowhere.

Part of the problem can be blamed on the new hours for school. Children are to be in their seats at 8am Monday through Friday, which means parents who take their children to school have had to make adjustments in their schedules.

Another part of the problem is the intersection at Hirst and Shamrock. That marvel of engineering ingenuity has been a God-send for commuters trying to negotiate their way on to the main road from Newlands. But too often it is causing a bottleneck, slowing traffic to a miserable crawl.

The Roads Authority thinks it has a solution in mind and on hand. Roadwork is continuing on Shamrock at Spotts to replace a lane taken out by Hurricane Ivan.

That will give traffic headed toward Old Prospect Road from the eastern districts a second lane to merge in to, theoretically easing traffic congestion.

While the Roads Authority is to be commended for coming up with solutions to end time-consuming commutes, the entire solution shouldn’t rest on that department’s shoulders.

Fewer cars on the road would help. To that end, commuters in the eastern districts should be leaving some of their vehicles at home and riding in with neighbours, families or friends. There is also the bus service to consider when getting a ride in to town.

Some countries have made it illegal for lone people to commute to work, forcing car pooling.

All commuters on Grand Cayman, from West Bay to Kaibo, should look at creative ways to car pooling. It will help with the traffic congestion, save money for petrol and help the environment.

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