10/16/2014

Study: U.S. Traffic Snarls Cost $124 Billion Last Year

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An analysis from the London-based Centre for Economics and Business Research says the economic cost of traffic congestion in the U.S. totaled $124 billion last year and could jump 50% to $186 million by 2030.

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An analysis from the London-based Centre for Economics and Business Research says the economic cost of traffic congestion in the U.S. totaled $124 billion last year and could jump 50% to $186 million by 2030.

The report was commissioned by Inrix Inc., a Kirkland, Wash.-based provider of traffic information and analytics. The center also studied the effect of traffic snarls in France, Germany and the U.K.

The study estimates the current cost of congestion is $1,700 per American household. It puts the monetary impact of carbon emissions from vehicles idling in traffic last year at $300 million.

Los Angeles accounts for almost 20% of all traffic congestion in the U.S., according to the study. The report predicts traffic tie-ups across the country will only get worse as the population expands and another 30 million vehicles join the 251 million already on the road.

Inrix opines that easing congestion can come through greater connectivity between vehicles and their surroundings. The company says the real-time traffic data it collects can help transportation departments develop effective intelligent transportation solutions.