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I don't think that merging at the "merge point" or end of the line will help to ease traffic at all. The problem is like the article suggests, that there isn't any room, anywhere, to merge. Waiting until the end of the line reduces your chances of successfully merging at a constant speed which forces you to decelerate drastically to match the slower speed of traffic in the jammed lane.

My favorite example of this is in Seattle on I-5 Northbound entering the downtown area. There is an exit only lane on the left side of a 3 lane road. When traffic is lighter, the speed is a steady 45 mph (speed limit is 60 mph) and there are gaps enough for a single car to merge/change lanes at almost point. Motorists in the left hand exit only lane (who receive over a mile notice of the impending exit) travel at a higher rate of speed until the last minute and merge "normally." This last minute merging would be at what you are proposing is the 'merge point'. The problem is that the motorist on the left inevitably must hit their brakes to decelerate to match the speed of the motorists on the right that they were passing. The motorist in the right lane who is trying to maintain a gap in front of them for safety and merging must then decelerate to continue to maintain that gap. The other motorist in the right lane behind the 'merge point' must then slow to match the slowing of the person who was forced to in front of them by the late merger, AND then they must be wary of the second late merging motorist who has passed them and expects to merger every other car. THIS is what causes the ensuing traffic slow down with slow reaction times multiplying the problem (same as when a traffic light turns green; in theory, everyone should be able to accelerate evenly and at the same time but you inevitably are waiting to accelerate depending on the number of cars in front of you).

I have personally tried leaving a large gap in front of me to allow the late and passing motorists plenty of space to merge. Unfortunately this requires traveling at the slower buffer speed for some time and all too frequently, left-lane-impending-exit-motorists STILL wait until the last minute to merger into a tighter gap.

I'm a firm believer of merging before you know you are forced to thereby elongating the merging/zipper point to allow for slow reaction times of slow drivers.

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