Following in third and fourth place was Liverpool and Birmingham


According to a new league table from the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC), Manchester comes second only to the Capital for traffic jams and delays.

As part of their research, the NIC looked into how easy it was for commuters to drive from one area to another during peak times compared to off-peak times. The areas with the largest imbalance between them both were classed as the most congested.

Following in third and fourth place behind London and Manchester were Liverpool and Birmingham. Not unsurprisingly, the top 25 traffic hot-spots on the league table were all urban areas.

Following in third and fourth place was Liverpool and Birmingham

After London, Manchester comes second for traffic jams and delays. © Copyright Oliver Dixon and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


A combined area extending Accrington and Rossendale in Lancashire was the highest ranked “non-primary urban area” to appear on the table coming in at number 26.

What the data suggests is that there’s a need for serious investment in urban road networks across the UK, said NIC’s Chairman, Sir John Armitt.

But what plans are needed to fix the problem? Local leaders who’ve more of an understanding of what their own people need should be given the power and money to be able to develop their own joined plans to combat traffic issues.

A few of the UK’s cities will gain from the Commission’s scrutiny, with any lessons learned passed on to help other areas.

Sir John Armitt said: “From Manchester to Bournemouth our cities are facing gridlock – creating misery for people trying to get from A to B,” also adding: “Trying to tackle this from London won’t work. Our metro mayors and city leaders need to be in the driving seat to develop local solutions.”

The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) is an independent organisation assigned with advising the UK Government on how the country’s infrastructure needs to progress.

The new league table was put together as part of the five-yearly National Infrastructure Assessment, which is now asking for a further £43 billion for improvements to urban transport by 2040.


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