How Subway Strikes Can Reduce Your Commute Time

September 30, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

London has had about 50 subway underground, strikes since 2000. The Economist looked at a study on what this did to commuting patterns:

  • In February last year 171 of the system’s 270 stations shut down due to a strike.
  • While 75% of commuters had to alter their route as a result of the strike, only 70% of travelers returned to their old route after the strike was over.
  • The remaining 5% seem to have inadvertently found quicker commuting paths during the strike.
  • Subway maps aren’t always the best representation of a city’s geography. Therefore a route that seems to make sense on a subway map may not actually be the fastest way to get to a destination.
  • Strikes force commuters to think of alternate stations that they can use – and for a surprising number the alternate route is actually faster.
  • On average therefore those who were affected by the strike shaved 20 seconds of off their commute time once the strike was over.
  • Summed over time these benefits will more than make up for the cost of the strike.

Read more about the study and its conclusions over here.

Source: The Economist