During the evening rush hour on September 17, downtown Beijing had a record number of traffic jams – 140 roads were jammed. This broke the earlier record of 90 roads blocked by snow. During the rush hour, the average traffic speed was less than 20 kilometers per hour. It was believed that the main reasons for the traffic situation were: (1) the fall holiday season, (2) rain, (3) the weekend, (4) increased fender-benders, (5) only cars with tag numbers ending in 4 or 9 were not allowed to be on the road, (6) an ever increasing number of cars. Currently there are 4.5 million automobiles in Beijing. Experts believe that the Beijing traffic problem is ultimately a city planning issue, which is a comprehensive topic. The growing population is becoming a heavy burden. The government is asking drivers to avoid busy roads and even to avoid driving.
Source: Beijing News, September 18, 2010