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30 Worst Traffic Jams in U.S. Cost $2.4 Billion Each Year, Study Finds

30 Worst Traffic Jams in U.S. Cost $2.4 Billion Each Year, Study Finds

30 Worst Traffic Jams in U.S. Cost $2.4 Billion Each Year

If the 30 worst areas of traffic in the United States were addressed to no longer cause bottlenecks, about $2.4 billion in delays and lost productivity could be saved every year, according to the findings of a new study.

That study, Unclogging America’s Arteries 2015, focused on identifying the 50 worst traffic jams in the nation, along with their costs to the American public. And the findings – on the aggregate scale – also indicated that, if these 30 worst traffic jams were no longer “clogging” the roadways:

  • About $39 billion “of regained value of time” could be saved over 20 years or so.
  • About 91 million hours of delays for drivers could be avoided.
  • Roughly 9,800 traffic crashes could be prevented.
  • About 35 million gallons of fuel could be saved.
  • Roughly 740 million pounds of vehicle emissions could be prevented from being released into the environment.

Where the Worst Traffic Jams Are, According to the Study

In analyzing various federal traffic data, these researchers identified the following cities as holding the top 10 spots for the worst traffic jams in the U.S.:

  • Chicago came in number 1.
  • Los Angeles held spots 2 through 7.
  • New York ranked in spots 8 and 9.
  • Austin came in at 10.

Other cities to earn a spot in the top 50 ranking included (but were not limited to) Boston, Philadelphia, Miami, Washington D.C., Atlanta, and Seattle.

So, knowing where the worst traffic jams are – and what resolving them could mean in terms of financial savings and environmental benefits, what are researchers proposing to address the issue?

Primarily, they are focused on developing new roads, bypasses and other highway infrastructures to alleviate traffic. In fact, they explained that:

The $2.4 billion lost in delays from just these top 30 bottlenecks – if reinvested in bottleneck solutions – could unleash significant economic and personal productivity in several metropolitan areas each year.

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