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Traffic and transportation strategies for the 2020 Games

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The 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are only eight months away and extensive planning and preparations have been progressing steadily for years. Teams of experts are on schedule in their work on the multitude of component parts required to make the games go smoothly for residents and international guests. A key area of importance is the development of innovative traffic and transportation management strategies for the surge in travelers and traffic during the games and the various trial events.

The Olympic Village and many of the facilities such as the event venues are located in areas with heavy commuter traffic and complex logistics. On top of that, demand for transportation for athletes, games-related officials as well as spectators will add to the regular traffic volume. Therefore it will be imperative to ensure smooth operation of transportation for Olympics-related traffic while concurrently maintaining the economic and daily routine activities in the Tokyo metropolitan region.

However, simulation results indicate that the time loss caused by road traffic congestion in the metropolitan expressway network will become twice as serious, and that heavy congestion of train commuters will occur in and around stations near the games’ venues unless extra measures are taken.

To help solve this problem, legal amendments enacted in 2018 will establish a four-day holiday before and after the Olympic opening ceremony on July 24 and a three-day holiday around the closing ceremony on Aug. 9 to reduce the volume of commuter traffic and economic activities.

Furthermore, we need to take a comprehensive approach, including traffic-demand management, traffic regulation and additional countermeasures to........

© The Japan Times