WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

D.C. Area Has Worst Traffic In U.S.

Play associated audio
 
D.C. area drivers are saddled with the longest commutes of any metropolitan area in the country, according to a new ranking.
Armando Trull
  D.C. area drivers are saddled with the longest commutes of any metropolitan area in the country, according to a new ranking.

The Washington, D.C. metro area has the worst commute in the country. Drivers in the metro D.C. area spend an average of three days per year in bumper to bumper traffic, according to 2011 rankings from Texas A&M University released this morning. 

That 74-hour yearly traffic figure is enough to earn the area the title of the most traffic-congested region in the country, according to the 2011 Urban Mobility Report from the university's Texas Transportation Institute. That time sitting in traffic amounts to 37 extra gallons of fuel per year, and nearly $1,500 in lost wages, on average.

D.C. drivers will hardly take comfort in having bested other high ranking cities, Chicago and and Los Angeles -- the metro areas that ranked second and third, respectively, in the traffic congestion study.

There is good news, though. As for the reason D.C. is number one for traffic congestion, the study cites the region’s relatively strong economy. That, and the ongoing road construction that never seems to stop.

Local transportation experts say the region could grind to a standstill by 2030 unless more highways are built and more mass transit options are created.

Correction: The original version of this article misstated the length of average commutes in Washington. D.C. area drivers spend an average of 74 hours per year in traffic.

NPR

A Story Of Torture And Forgiveness That Spans A Half-Century

Director Jonathan Teplitsky speaks about his film The Railway Man. It tells the true story of Eric Lomax, a British Army officer who was a prisoner of war during World War II at a Japanese labor camp.
NPR

Consider The Can: An Unlikely Twist On A Louisiana Dish

When Poppy Tooker was a kid, her favorite dish was her great-grandmother's Peas in a Roux. Only years later did Tooker discover that canned peas — not fresh or frozen — were the key to the recipe.
NPR

Chelsea Clinton Says She's Pregnant

The 34-year-old daughter of former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says she and husband Marc Mezvinsky are "very excited."
NPR

Ohio's Law Against Political Lying Heads To Supreme Court

Can a state law prevent political campaigns from doling out misinformation? Guest host Celeste Headlee learns more from The Plain Dealer's Sabrina Eaton.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.