30 worst cities for traffic in America

traffic2Which American city has the worst traffic? If you said New York or Los Angeles, guess again. A new survey by TomTom, which is based on the traffic data of millions of GPS users, finds Seattle has the highest percentage of congested roadways.

The results come from TomTom’s speed profiles, an historical speed database from TomTom map business unit Tele Atlas. The profiles aggregate the actual speeds that millions of anonymous, GPS-enabled drivers have traveled over the last two years.

Cities were ranked as most to least congested according to how fast cars could travel on the street network. A city’s traffic was defined as congested if drivers could travel at only 70 percent or less of the posted speed limit, meaning on average an hour long commute included 20 minutes or more of significant delays.
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Which city has the worst traffic in America? Survey says …

laLos Angeles. That’s according to a new survey by Inrix, which provides traffic and navigation services and produces a biannual traffic scorecard.

But there’s good news — or was good news — even for Angelinos who dread their morning commute. Gridlock reached its low point in the second quarter of 2009, thanks to the recession.

Unfortunately, it’s started to rebound again.

Here’s the Inrix list of most congested cities:
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What costs travelers $87 billion a year and is basically unavoidable?

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If you thought fees, or nonexistent customer service or high fuel prices were the biggest problems facing travelers, think again. It’s traffic, according to the Texas Transportation Institute’s 2009 Annual Urban Mobility Report.

This chart shows the total cost of congestion for each population size group. It accounts for the amount of wasted time and fuel due to traffic congestion. The total cost of congestion in the urban areas is $87.2 billion in 2007 or an average of $757 per peak-period traveler.

Let’s put $87 billion into a little perspective.
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Here’s a “recovery” every bargain hunter is gonna love

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Traffic to the three major online travel agencies — Expedia, Orbitz and Travelocity — is trending upward, as bargain-hunters snap up discounted airline tickets, hotel rooms and rental cars. It helps that the agencies eliminated some of their booking fees a few months ago.

Expedia’s bounce (in blue) is the most dramatic, with traffic levels markedly higher than it was at this point a in 2008. The other two OTAs (Orbitz in yellow and Travelocity in green) are holding steady, versus last July’s levels.

You might think that rebounding traffic would translate into an upward stock price. Not necessarily.
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