Expressway tidal lane helps relieve holiday congestion

From: Shenzhen Daily | Updated: 2019-06-10

The introduction of a 5-km tidal lane between the elevated bridge at Yantian port area and Dameisha Toll Gate on Huizhou-Shenzhen Coastal Expressway on Friday, said to be the first tidal lane on an expressway in China, helped relieve congestion for holidaymakers during the three-day Dragon Boat Festival holiday.

In the three days, the tidal lane diverted 6,499 vehicles and improved the road capacity by 10 percent, Shenzhen traffic police said yesterday.

On Saturday, the second day of the tidal lane’s operation, police said it helped improve the traffic capacity for vehicles going east. During the whole day, the obvious congestion at the elevated bridge near Yantian port area had disappeared. At the seafood street section of the expressway, a short period of backed up traffic occurred due to a four-car accident.

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., when the tidal lane was in use, the vehicle flow increased by 894 cars, an increase of 8.07 percent compared to the same period last year. Among them, 1,802 cars used the tidal lane, or 450 cars an hour. Some drivers thought the tidal lane helped them save at least 20 minutes while passing through the most congested sections.

According to police, the tidal lane will be implemented on the dates that require vehicles to make reservations to drive to the city’s eastern tourism attractions in the Dapeng and Meisha areas.

On Friday, the first day of the Dragon Boat Festival holiday, 2,886 vehicles were recorded entering the Dapeng, Meisha and Fairy Lake Botanical Garden areas without reservations. The drivers face fines of 300 yuan (US$44) and three penalty points added to their licenses for the violations.

The implementation of vehicle reservations for the city’s eastern tourist attractions also helped reduce the vehicle flow by 11 percent compared to the same period last year.

The tidal lane for eastbound vehicles is the left-most lane for westbound vehicles. Between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., westbound vehicles are not allowed to enter.

A tidal lane for westbound vehicles will be introduced June 29, and vehicles will be banned from entering between 5:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.