Traffic on portion of I-35 ranked among worst in Texas
AUSTIN, Texas —
Austin traffic is a constant frustration for some, especially I-35 where one study ranked one portion the most congested in the state.
INRIX just released its 2015 traffic scorecard for cities across the nation. It looked at drive times in certain areas on highways in cities throughout the U.S. and then ranked them against each other.
"We look at hundreds of thousands of trips and it's GPS data that we get from the cars themselves," INRIX head of analytics Chris Handley said.
Austin did not rank in the top 10 cities with the worst traffic in terms of average time wasted per commuter. That went to Los Angeles, California with 81 hours. Houston was fourth with 74 hours.
However, one stretch of I-35 did rank as one of the most congested in the nation.
"You'd expect to see these corridors in LA or New York or D.C," Handley said.
That stretch was northbound I-35 from Ben White Blvd. to the 235/Martin Luther King Blvd. exit. It ranked 24th in the nation with a yearly delay drive time of 39 hours at the peak time of Friday at 4:00 p.m.
The study also looked at other highway stretches in Austin like MoPac and other stretches of I-35. The worst for MoPac was southbound from Steck to Barton Skyway which ranked 56th in the nation. You can see the full list here.
While the 24th ranking for the portion of I-35 doesn't make the top 10, the top 23 portions all come from four different cities. 11 of the top 25 corridors in the nation are in Los Angeles and the rest are in Chicago, New York and San Francisco. That means that section of I-35 has more congestion than any corridors in Seattle, Washington D.C. and Boston.
It also means it's the most congested in Texas, just in front of a Dallas/Fort Worth section of road on Interstate 30.
"You're not dealing with just with regular traffic from the city. You're dealing with traffic from crossing the state," commuter from San Antonio Juan Carlos Hernandez said.
Hernandez was even caught in the stretch of road Wednesday morning which was worse with the First Lady in town.
"And it was awful," Hernandez said.
Others, like commuter Byrn Rathgeber, aren't surprised Austin has some of the worst traffic.
"I hate Austin's traffic, I've grown up here and it's gotten steadily worse," Rathgeber said.
Rathgeber was just about to go home during the 5 o'clock traffic.
"I'm not excited about it but I have a Spotify playlist ready," Rathgeber said.
The second worst corridor for congestion in Austin was southbound I-35 from Airport Blvd to the 235A Martin Luther King Blvd exit. The study says that's ranked 38th in the nation and its peak time is Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. Drivers spend 26 extra hours a year on that road during peak times.