Decreased travel speeds in the Helsinki region

Travel speed by car has fallen in the Helsinki region. The
average travel speed in the morning peak was 38 km/h. Traffic was
slow in particular in the city center but the speeds were low also
on many radial routes into the city. The biggest reason for the
slowing travel speeds is increased traffic volume.

The average travel speed in the evening peak was 35 km/h. The
biggest decrease in the evening peak average speed was seen in the
Ring Road I zone. Traffic is usually slower in the evening peak
than in the morning. The difference is particularly marked in the
city center and the Ring Road I zone. 

In the city center, day time travel speeds were lower in
comparison to speed limits than in other zones, often less than 50
% of the speed limit. As for radial roads, Vihdintie is clearly
slower than the other radial roads. 

HSL has regularly monitored travel speeds in the Helsinki
metropolitan area main roads. HSL measured travel speeds in
September/October 2011. Kerava, Kirkkonummi and Östersundom were
also included in the study area. Travel speeds are measured using a
GPS device in a car driving with the traffic flow within speed
limits. Speeds were measured on a total of 19 routes. The
measurements were performed on weekdays in the morning and evening
peaks as well as during the daytime.

The previous measurements were performed in 2009. There were
three measurement zones: city center, Ring Road I zone, and Ring
Road III zone. 

Average travel speeds (km/h) calculated from travel times
on the HSL area main route network in 2009 and 2011 


Average travel speeds(km/h)             
 Measurement zone Morning   Day     Evening  
  2009  2011   2009 2011   2009  2011
 City center  21.4  19.0  25.9  23.9  15.8  14.8
 Ring Road I zone  41.7  39.2  55.5  54.7  41.3  36.2
 Ring Road III zone  50.9  48.3  62.2  60.8  50.0  48.5
 Whole area  41.0  38.2  51.7  49.9  37.4  35.0