Most congested roads in Geneva revealed

Most congested roads in Geneva revealed

Be it sitting in a jam on the way to work or being late for your flight at the airport, it’s safe to say that the roads and motorways around cities in Switzerland are not the most beloved by drivers. Now, new data from the Transport Office of Geneva (OCT) has shown which roads in the city are the most congested.

Which roads in Geneva have the most traffic?

To find out which roads in Geneva see the most traffic jams, the OCT compiled traffic data from January to June and from September to December 2023 over several 24-hour periods. Bear in mind that the study only concerned major roads within Geneva itself and those controlled by the canton, so smaller rat runs in the city were not included.

Roads were considered congested once they achieved a designated “occupancy rate” - meaning a specific number of cars passed official measuring stations in a set amount of time. If the rate is above 15 percent, a road is considered to be congested. To supplement their own findings, the canton also used data from TomTom - the study which found Geneva to be the worst city in Switzerland for traffic.

Geneva inner city remains jammed up with cars

In the study, the OCT found that the area around Cornavin station is one of the most congested areas in Geneva, with occupancy rates of between 51 and 100 percent almost every day. This was blamed on the fact that while it remains a key artery for inner city drivers, it also serves as a hub for public transport - 270 buses and trams pass through the area during peak hours, while 70.000 people use Geneva Cornavin itself every day.

In a statement given to the Tribune de Genève (TDG), the OCT noted that because road intersections around the station give priority to the 10 bus lines and four tram routes, “the capacity for individual motorised transport is strongly constrained, particularly from Rue de la Servette.”

Geneva cross-border routes see heavy traffic jams

Alongside central Geneva, the study found that areas between the city and the French border town of Annemasse are also heavily jammed up most of the time. The worst hit roads are the Rue de Genève, and the Jussy road, the latter of which was found to be slow or jammed up the vast majority of the time. On the opposite side of the city, roads around Meyrin were also regularly clogged up with drivers, especially at rush hour.

In the statement, the OCT said that the heavy traffic around Annemasse can be blamed on the number of people living in France who commute to and from Geneva for jobs, and the large number of cross-border residents coming to Geneva for shopping, leisure and sport. 

Driving remains the transport of choice for cross-border workers

This is exacerbated by a continued preference for driving. The OCT noted that while numbers are improving, in 2022 81 percent of Geneva cross-border commuters still drove to the city, compared to just 17 percent who took public transport. To remedy the traffic problems, the office noted that several measures are currently in the pipeline, such as road expansions and the promise to develop public transit routes between Geneva and surrounding areas.

Writing to the TDG, Touring Club Switzerland president François Memberz said that the problem is far worse than the data suggests, noting that other traffic hot spots, such as around the bridges crossing the River Rhône, were not mentioned by the report. He argued that the solution lay in maintaining 50-kilometre-an-hour speed limits and installing intelligent chains of traffic lights - like those in New York - on major routes.

Thumb image credit: Thamrongsak.S /

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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