Alberta: Banff launches Traffic Dashboard to battle gridlock on roads

On the busiest day last summer, 28,000 vehicles went through the area.

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Summer traffic is like ‘New York City in rush hour’

Banff has created an online tool to help visitors and residents navigate traffic congestion that’s getting worse every year.

The town’s ‘Traffic Dashboard’ provides live traffic cameras and estimated travel times to various locations in the popular tourist town.

Residents have long complained of gridlock on the roads — especially in the busy summer season and on long weekends.

“Basically New York City in rush hour at Times Square,” is how Louis J. Normand sums it up. “You’ve got wall-to-wall of cars on both ways the whole main street.”

Mayor Karen Sorensen says officials have been trying to reduce traffic by offering more public transit and free shuttles, but as the number of tourists go up, so do the traffic tie ups.

The new Traffic Dashboard shows estimated travel times across the bridge, among other things, and is meant to alert visitors and residents so they can plan ahead.

“It will allow our visitors and our residents to make informed decisions before they head out,” Sorensen told CBC News.

But some like Jesse Shaw say he’s not sure it would help.

“It would take more time to look at it, then get on my bike and just go. I mean for people that are just coming here and they’re fresh and don’t know where they’re going, I guess that would be helpful.”

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