Forbes recently published
a collection of the worst traffic jams in the United States, arranged from ten to one. Although top ten is often considered a prestigious award, these positions only rate cities from the ten spot, being bad, to the one spot, being the worst traffic jams. Although all of the cities together average 47 hours per year, the position of each city is determine by a variety of criteria
We begin the list with Washington, D.C., finding its way to the number ten spot on the list. Drivers, on average, spend 40 hours a year stuck in traffic. As our nations' capital, and home to over six million residents, including the city and metro area, it is also one of the busiest tourist attractions in the entire country. Falling to the number ten spot may be surprising to some, but heavy traffic in this area is a daily part of life.
Making its way to the number nine spot, and occupying nearly 38 hours each year of drivers' time, is Boston Massachusetts. Boston, home to 7.6 million residents, is the 6th most populous city, including downtown, urban and metro areas, in the entire United States. Boston, being the largest city in New England, has an economy based primarily on finance and business services, as well as government activities. Given the high amount of traffic jams, this city provides numerous modes of transportation to help residents and tourists make their way around the city in a more reliable fashion.
Seattle, Washington lands the number eight spot, giving drivers the displeasure of spending an average of 37 hours sitting in traffic. A 2008 publication
on Seattle's traffic stated that traffic jams occur on Seattle's freeway on- and off-ramps for two reasons. "As the one large pipe of a freeway ramp meets the many small pipes of city streets, motorists are making many turning movements and sorting themselves out into the grid." and "When the freeway is congested, cars heading onto the freeway back up onto city streets, reducing the ability of those streets to serve local trips." It does not seem like the city planners have done much in the way of correcting these issues.
The number seven spot, averaging 35 hours a year, is San Jose,
California. San Jose is the third largest city in California; falling only to the position of the tenth-largest in the entire United States. This city is also the largest in the entire Northern California, which contributes to the high amount of time sitting in traffic.
Jamming up 42-hours a year of your time, is Bridgeport
, Connecticut in the number 6 spot. As the most populated city in Connecticut, there is an estimated 144,000 people that call this city, located on the Pequonnock River and Long Island Sound, home.
New York City, NY lands the number five spot- averaging 53 hours spent in traffic jams per year. Not only does NYC provider drivers with over a full work week sitting in traffic, but the city is known for having notoriously slow moving traffic- even on weekdays! A tracking system compiled
in 2010 determined that Wednesday traffic flows as slowly as 9.3 MPH, where Sunday holds the fastest traveling speed of 11.5MPH. It is hard to believe this city is known for the fast paced, hustle and bustle.
Austin, Texas, at the number four position, provides drivers 41 hours a year to sit in jams viewing other cars stopped on the roads. Texas has taken the initiative to relieve traffic congestion, by introducing State Highway 130
in 1985. 130, which runs concurrently with Highway 45, was completed in 2012 with its last leg with a speed limit of 85 MPH.
Finding its way to third place is San Francisco, California, where drivers spend over 56 hours in traffic. A report
in 2011 found drivers in San Francisco spent over $1100 a year and 39 gallons of gas just sitting in traffic- and that was when they spent 49 hours. Given the inflation of time and cost, this amount is over $1500 annually.
Situated on the island of Oahu, Honolulu Hawaii makes it way to second place by giving drivers an average of 60 hours to sit in traffic. There are a few reasons why the traffic in this city is so bad. The population in Hawaii exceeds 1 million residents; 900,000 of which reside in Honolulu. This number continues to grow every year, coupled with the increased number of tourists, making the traffic in this city nearly impossible to deal with. Coupling these statistics
, the growing population and bad city planning in the past, this traffic issue does not seem to be improving any time soon.
Making its way to the number one position, and taking over the label as the "Worst Traffic Jammed city in the United States" is Los Angeles, California. Being the third city in Los Angeles found on the top ten, Los Angeles is most recognized for being the largest city
in California with a population of close to 3.4 million residents. Drivers in Los Angeles can expect to spend 64 hours a year sitting in traffic. That is over one and a half weeks of full-time employment. This number is up a full 8.5% since the 2012 numbers were given. Not only does Los Angeles have the worst traffic jams in the United States, but the freeway system there is more congested than systems found
in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Now that the numbers are in for the most jammed up cities in the United States, it is notable that these cities are home of some of the most sought after attractions in the United States. Next time, choose your modes of transportation wisely when it comes to making your way around these cities.