Report: Traffic costs average Portland driver $1,600 a year
It's as blatant as a car horn: Traffic can be a beast in the Rose City, with too many drivers cramming onto a too crowded road network.
But a new report from a Kirkland, Washington, data firm puts the pain into perspective. The Inrix "2018 Global Traffic Scorecard" ranks Portland as having the 10th worst rush hour traffic in the nation.
Hope, however, may be on the horizon. Portland landed in the No. 8 spot last year, meaning that Stumptown has improved by two slots since 2017. The study also shows that Portland drivers lose 116 hours a year idling in traffic, which is actually a nine percent decrease year over year.
It takes about five minutes to travel a mile when crawling through Portland's downtown during rush hour, Inrix says, and the average speed for downtown rush-hour drivers is a snail's pace: just 13 miles per hour.
The total cost of congestion for Portland motorists? $1,625 a year per driver — for a citywide cost of $1.4 billion a year.
"If we're to avoid traffic congestion becoming a further drain on our economy, we must invest in intelligent transportation systems to tackle our mobility challenges," said Trevor Reed, a transportation analyst who works for Inrix.
"Congestion costs Americans billions of dollars each year. It will continue to have serious consequences for national and local economies, businesses and citizens in the years to come," he continued.
The most congested urban area in the U.S. is Boston, followed by Washington, D.C., Chicago, New York City and Boston rounding out the top five.
Read the full report here.