BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Baltimore’s beltway traffic is ranked as some of the worst in the country, according to a new study by INRIX.
The traffic consulting firm ranked so-called “traffic hotspots” in the 25 most congested cities in the country. In Baltimore, a stretch of the outer loop took top honors.
It’s comes as no surprise to many drivers in Baltimore region that traffic along the outer loop of the beltway is anything but a joyride.
“It’s bad. There’s just too many cars on the road,” one man said. “There’s really nothing you can do, you just got to sit in it and deal with it and get angry like everybody else does.”
Just how bad is it?
According to the study, it’s the 19th most congested metro area in the country. Specifically, the northwest stretch between the Baltimore National Pike in Catonsville and Providence road in Towson.
“It just get really bad, we can be in traffic almost for about an hour,” said driver Bre’elle Hamilton.
Inrix analyzed more than 100,000 “traffic hotspots” in 25 major cities.
Their rankings are based on something called an “impact factor” which looks at duration, length and frequency of traffic jams.
Time in traffic equals some serious money. A combined $8.1 billion, according to the study, will be wasted in time, lost fuel and carbon emissions over the next decade.
“For this study we looked at all times of day, everyday,” said Bob Pishue, who is a senior economist at INRIX.
He says unfortunately there doesn’t appear to be a quick fix to the problem.
“Could we possibly eliminate congestion? Yeah, I mean it’s physically possible, but, would we want to? Probably not because of the enormous cost of that,” he said.
He says the data can at least help cities better plan in how and where they invest in combating congestion.
This month, Gov. Larry Hogan announced plans for the widening for three major highways in the state to ease congestion, which doesn’t include the portion of the outer loop that made the “traffic hotspot” list.
Other top traffic contenders should come as no surprise, Los Angeles, New York City, and D.C. took the top three spots.