INRIX 2009 National Traffic Scorecard

INRIX’s National Traffic Scored 2009 Annual Report provides year over year insight into traffic patterns nationally.

The high level point is that traffic dropped 30% starting in late 2007, bottomed in Q2’09 and is on the rise again.  This pace of this rise though is driven in large part ‘by the pace of economic recovery — particularly job growth and fuel pries.’  In 2009 the national fuel average dropped to $2.35/gallon from $3.25 in 2008 (here in Los Angeles it was more like $3.25 and $4, so it seemed).  Basically, if you’ve managed to keep a job through this economy your commute should have been quicker and cheaper.

INRIX highlights a number of issues related to the gridlock throughout large parts of the country (partial list below):

  • How much and how fast congestion will increase from 2009 will depend on job growth
  • Attacking bottlenecks is critical
  • Fright mobility is a national issue

I’m particularly a fan of the story of the I580 and I101 interchange which was ranked 3rd and 4th worst nationally in 2007 and 2008 respectively, but fell to 491st after a simple restriping of the lanes (to add a second).

Facts and Stats:

  • The nation’s Travel Time Tax™ was 8.9% in 2009 (vs. 8.8% in 2008, 13.3% in 2007)
  • Changes in morning congestion (down) and evening congestion (up) cancelled out
  • 30 minute commutes average 22 hours of annual travel time delay nationwide
  • Stimulus projects are increasing off-peak congestion, up 25% from 2008
  • 75 of the 100 largest metropolitan areas still have less congestion than in 2006

Click through to the report itself for the nitty gritty details of the report.

via [INRIX]

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