April 11, 2020

Lockdown News 4: How we stopped moving

Statistics from our favourite public transport app Citymapper show how cities came to a stop.

Paris on Good Friday 2020. (Data: Citymapper)
Paris on Good Friday 2020. (Data: Citymapper)

Statistics from our favourite public transport app Citymapper show how cities came to a stop.

Only 5% mobility in Paris

Citymapper is a mobility app that mainly gives you itineraries for public transport (you can also inlcude bikes and such in your search). They publish a “Mobility Index”, which is the number of trips compared to an average day.

Mid-March (Data: Citymapper) Mid-March (Data: Citymapper)

Currently, Paris is at 5%.

Even though the data is not representative (western tourists are much more likely to use the app than local commuters), but it still paints a stark picture on how our cities went into lockdown.

Milano first

4 weeks ago, the world was still moving. Milano, at near the heart of the first major cluster in Lombardy, had already shut down at 9%, and Rome was following close behind.

Berlin, London and Paris go into shutdown (Data: Citymapper) Berlin, London and Paris go into shutdown (Data: Citymapper)

Seoul, affected since February, was holding steady at 42%. London still at 83%, Sydney, Moscow and Istanbul all bustling around full capacity.

St. Petersburg goes down last

The week after that, the picture had changed. Paris was now in lockdown at 11%, Berlin getting used to the new restrictions at 21%. London still unsure, but well below normal, at 36%. Only Singapure and St. Petersburg still busy at 75% and 79%, respectively.

HK soldiers on

Another two weeks, and nothing moves any more. Hong Kong and Singapore – hit early, but relatively well-prepared – manage to avoid a complete standstill at around 40% of normal.

Stockholm, maybe due to Sweden’s “soft” approach, maintains 30%.

Of the rest, only 3 cities see more than 20% of the usual activity.

Paris’ public transport is down now to 5%. The only ones still using the metro are health works and the people who keep the city running: Supermarket staff, bakers, shopkeepers, garbage collectors and cleaners.


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