Austin traffic 21st worst in hemisphere

By RICH KEITH, Four Points News

Austin ranked as the 21st worst city in the Americas for traffic congestion according to the 2013 TomTom Americas Traffic Index released last week. The report shows that Austin has some of the worst traffic in the western hemisphere.

GPS maker TomTom collected GPS measurement data from drivers on the roads during rush hours and non-rush hours.

photo by RealtyProAustin

photo by RealtyProAustin

The report compares travel times during non-rush hours with travel times during rush hour. The difference is expressed as a percentage increase in travel time during the rush hours.

A typical Austin motorist with a 30 minute commute will experience an estimated 83 hours of traffic delays over the course of a year, according to the report. Motorists experienced about 34 minutes of delays per hour, driven during Austin’s increasingly lengthy rush hour.

Among U.S. cities, Austin has the 15th worst traffic congestion in the nation. Houston has slightly worse traffic than Austin, according to the report, ranking as the 20th worst traffic in the Americas and 14th in the U.S. New Orleans has slightly better traffic than Austin, ranked 23rd worst in the Americas and 16th worst in the U.S.

Highway motorists in Austin deal with less congestion than those who take local roads. Highway motorists experienced an average 17 percent more time in traffic over the last year, compared to 24 percent more time in traffic for those who take local roads, the report says.

The most congested day in Austin was Friday, May 24, 2013 as motorists took to the road for Memorial Day weekend.

Since data is collected from GPS devices, the report “takes into account local roads, arterials and highways.” Austin’s total measured road network was 1,284 miles and includes Four Points.

The report covers 61 cities in the western hemisphere and 161 cities around the world. The worst congestion in the Americas over the past year belongs to Rio de Janiero in Brazil.

The 22 worst cities in the western hemisphere are

Rio de Jeneiro

Sao Paulo

Vancouver, BC

Los Angeles

San Francisco



San Jose


Washington D.C.

New York


Portland, OR









New Orleans