Columbus traffic congestion is bad, but could be worse
If you think Columbus has bad traffic, take comfort in knowing it could be much, much worse.
Why it matters: The roads here were a bit more congested in 2021 than in 2020 as more residents commuted back to work, according to the latest TomTom Traffic Index.
- This matches a broader national trend of congestion slowly building back up, Axios' Joann Muller writes.
Yes, but: Columbus roadways are still clearer than they were in 2019.
How it works: TomTom collects anonymized GPS signals from hundreds of millions of drivers to analyze traffic in more than 400 cities around the globe.
- It then compares the baseline of free-flowing traffic to peak morning and evening times.
What they found: Columbus has a 13% congestion rate, meaning a 30-minute trip with no traffic takes an average of 34 minutes in busier traffic.
- Fellow Buckeye State locales of Akron, Dayton, Cleveland and Cincinnati have similarly low congestion rates compared to most other big U.S. cities.
- In contrast, New York has the nation's highest congestion rate at 35% — routinely turning a 30-minute trip into a 41-minute one.
By the numbers: Add up all the time stuck in traffic and Columbus residents wasted 29 hours on the roads last year.
- We're looking at you, I-71/70 interchange.
What we're watching: Will future traffic indexes show more intense numbers as the area continues to grow and more workers potentially head back to the office?
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