Panama City isn’t one of the largest cities I’ve ever been it but is does suffer from urban sprawl. The roads are in poor condition, there is a lack of traffic lights and traffic enforcement and there are only certain times of day where you can get from Point A to Point B without being stuck in immovable traffic. The bigger the city grows the more cars there are on the road and most of those cars only have one person in them. Sounds typical of any city in North America doesn’t it. Let’s add to the mix discourteous and aggressive drivers and compound the situation.
Driving in Panama City is not for the faint of heart. SU has been in war zones and even though he can manage driving in The City he still prefers to take a cab or be driven around. It’s less frazzling on the nerves and he gets to see more. When I’m visiting Panama City my friend and I make a concerted effort to go out during the non-peak times. This means getting out of the house before 6:00 a.m. or not being on the road from 7:00-9:00 a.m., 12:00-2:00 p.m., or 5:00-7:00 p.m. Often if we’re out close to 5:00 p.m. we’ll find somewhere to go and stay put until 7:00 when the traffic dies down. Our thought is that we’d be stuck in traffic for an hour or so anyway so we might as well stay put.
Today’s video is “How Not to Get Stuck in Traffic” by AsapSCIENCE. It has some great information about technologies and techniques that planners are using to try to alleviate traffic jams around the world. I don’t know if these techniques could ever help Panama City and for now this gal is going to stick to driving…in the campo.