I traded links with Mike Dahmus aka M1EK, over on twitter the other day; I’d just come across this Inrix Nation Traffic Scorecard.
Haven driven a lot in the past 6-months, and with my travelling backrgound, I was surprised to see that Austin appeared to be 23rd worst city in the US. I sent the link to Mike as I knew he’d have something to say. When I looked at the page, and you can sort by many columns and get different views, I was interested in when, where and other aspects of the data. It’s long been my view that Austins traffic wasn’t that bad, and that given the proximity of I35, the 45 Tollroad, and Mopac to downtown, actually it was pretty simple to get in and out.
Of course that isn’t true if you are one of those people who sit daily in the massive traffic jams to get from north to downtown, and to be honest, I don’t see the traffic trying to get from the south into downtown, just the downtown end of it.
What Mike pointed out was that the situation was actually much worse than I’d envisaged, especially looking at the Inrix study. While they give you the ability to sort by column, if you could sort on multiple columns, Austin would come out near the top if you took population, average delay and distance traveled. Mike’s tweet was “We’re even worse than we come off there; these studies unfairly penalize cities where large % of commuters don’t drive (i.e. NY).”
I’ve just been reading Mikes blog, and he makes some important points there on the recent Capital Metro’s Service 2020 plan, but also on the Rapid Bus proposal changes. Seems like there is a lot more work to do yet.