Minneapolis car travel time inches up post pandemic
Traveling by car in the Twin Cities is taking longer these days, Axios' Alex Fitzpatrick and Kavya Beheraj report from new TomTom data.
Why it matters: More time stuck in traffic means less time for family, friends, and life in general.
By the numbers: The average 6-mile trip in Minneapolis' city center took 12 minutes and four seconds last year.
- That's nine more seconds than in 2021.
The big picture: Car commutes have largely gotten slower across America since the mid-pandemic era — likely a reflection of increased traffic as more people head back to the office at least some of the time.
State of the cubicles: In Minneapolis, which saw commute times climb by slightly more than the national average, many large employers now require workers to be at the office two or three days a week.
- Target, downtown's largest employer, which is now mandating four in-person weeks a year, said in December that 35% of corporate workers go in at least once a week.
The intrigue: Data from the Minnesota Department of Transportation also showed an increase in traffic last year.
- But MnDOT found that the morning rush hour period remains less busy than before the pandemic. Congestion was up midday and highest around 4pm.
Between the lines: The pattern could signal a shift in office hours, as some employees head in later or go home earlier, the Star Tribune notes.
- The midday spike could also be the result of more workers doing errands or other trips during the workday, whether they are based at home or HQ.
Of note: Not everyone returning to the office is doing so by car. Public transit ridership was up 15% last year, Met Transit announced this week.
- And growing popularity of e-bikes has prompted city officials to explore a pilot program offering more storage options.
The bottom line: Next time you find yourself stuck in Twin Cities traffic, just remember: It could be worse.
- A six-mile trip in Washington, D.C., was up 97 seconds last year. In Boston, traveling six miles took drivers 86 seconds longer in 2023 compared to 2021.
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