GrowthTransportationEconomyArchive
Updated Mar 16 2016, by Gary Simonson, PSRC

Slow Start to 2016 on our Region’s Freeways

Figure 1. Vehicle Hours of Delay on Freeways
Figure 1. Vehicle Hours of Delay on Freeways

Traffic congestion on our freeways increased in the first two months of 2016, but the rate of increase has moderated compared to last year. In all, commuters on our region’s freeways spent almost 1.7 million hours sitting in congestion over the first two months of 2016 – up 17% from the first two months of 2015. When you consider the cost of this delay in terms of lost time, extra fuel and general wear and tear on your vehicle, this delay totaled over $49 milliion dollars for the first two months of the year. This equates to a daily cost of delay of approximately $1.2 million dollars per weekday on freeways in our region.

How do things compare by corridor?

Figure 2. Vehicle Hours of Delay by Corridor
Figure 2. Vehicle Hours of Delay by Corridor

Overall, delay across freeway corridors has increased between 2015 and 2016 but there are noticeable differences by freeway. I-5 and I-405 account for approximately 90% of the regional delay on freeways. Of this, I-5 accounted for over 64% of the regional freeway delay in the first two months of 2016, up from approximately 61% in 2015. Delay on I-405 between Tukwila and Lynnwood dropped between 2015 and 2016 and now accounts for approximately 24% of the freeway delay (down from 30% in 2015). SR 520 was the other corridor in which delay in 2016 did not increase over 2015 levels.