News Column

Better economy = worse congestion

March 8, 2011

Growing gridlock and longer commute times are the price motorists are paying as the improving U.S. economy puts more people back to work, a report says.

Traffic congestion increased nationwide for 11 consecutive months in 2010 with drivers experiencing increased traffic congestion nearly every hour of the day, traffic and navigation services company INRIX said in a report released Tuesday.

"America is back on the road to gridlock," INRIX President Bryan Mistele said. "Population growth, combined with increases in interstate commerce spurred by economic recovery, are fueling these increases.

"With only 150,000 new jobs created in our nation's urban centers last year, we can expect even worse gridlock when the 6 million jobs lost in the recession return to the nation's cities," he said.

Seventy of the 100 most populous cities in the United States are experiencing increases in traffic congestion, INRIX said.

Los Angeles, where the average evening commute takes an average 71 percent longer than it did in 2007, tops the list, the report said.

Source: Copyright United Press International 2011

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