Austin American-Statesman – Feb. 20, 2017

Ever wonder how much time you waste sitting in traffic? According to a new report, Austin drivers spent on average 47 hours in congestion during peak traveling times last year.

The report was done by transportation analysis firm INRIX, which said it looked at congestion rates and collected data from millions of vehicles and traffic devices in more than 1,000 cities around the globe. Austin was ranked as the 13th worst city in the U.S. and 42nd worst in the world when it comes to traffic congestion.

According to the report, Austin drivers spent 12 percent of their driving time stuck in traffic in 2016.

“Unsurprisingly, the cities most affected by congestion are capital cities,” said the report. “They typically have the densest road networks combined with large populations of residents, commuters and visitors.”

Think Austin traffic is terrible? Los Angeles topped the list for both the worst congested city in the U.S. and the world. Drivers spent an average of 104 hours in traffic during peak traveling times last year.

In addition to Austin’s congestion rankings, southbound Interstate 35 earned the number six position on the chart for the “Top 10 Worst U.S. Corridors.” The report says the average travel speed during peak hours between Airport Boulevard and Slaughter Lane was 23.4 mph, causing 63 hours of delay.

Despite the number of hours wasted in bumper-to-bumper predicaments, INRIX made the case that bad traffic can actually be a good indicator of good things happening in a city.

“Traffic is a sign of a healthy and burgeoning economy,” INRIX said in the report. “More traffic means more people, more jobs and more prosperity.”

 

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