5 U.S. Cities to Move to If You Hate Traffic

January 8th 2016

Taylor Bell

No one likes to be stuck in traffic. But nowadays it is hard to escape even if you live a smaller city. Now that the U.S. economy has recovered nearly all of the 9 million jobs lost during the recession, more people are on the roads than in previous years, according to 2015 Urban Mobility Scorecard.

Related: We Could Have Roads That Will Charge Your Car as You Drive

Traffic by the numbers


In 2014, American drivers in urban cities wasted an extra 6.9 billion hours in traffic, which the 2015 Urban Mobility Scorecard said takes more time to travel to Pluto and back. In fact, the average American will spend 42 hours on the road in traffic, Reuters reports.

Although it's no surprise that heavily populated and urban cities spend more hours in traffic, it's not just a "big-city problem anymore." The time you spend in traffic has been steadily increasing in small and large communities since 1982. For communities larger than 3 million people, the average time spent in traffic is 63 hours. By comparison, commuters in smaller communities spend around 34 hours in gridlock.

hours spent in traffic per state infographic

When you tally up all the numbers, American drivers wasted 3.1 billion gallons of gas and spent $160 billion traffic congestion fuel costs.

Traffic and fuel cost are two things that most drivers want to avoid but most states are not able to keep up with the increase of drivers on the road.

What are states doing to fix the issue?

According to the Huffington Post, federal and local officials are looking into ways to reduce traffic. Some strategies include using better technology to alert drivers of traffic jams and implementing policies that encourage people to walk or bike. Although some transportation services have replaced outdated traffic signals, it can cost $30,000 to $50,000 per intersection.

Related: Here's How Much More Cars Cost Than Bikes

So what are the best cities for commuting? A 2015 study ranked the best and worst cities to be a driver. Researchers factored in commute times, gas prices, car thefts, maintenance costs, parking rates among other things and these were the top contenders.

1. Lubbock, Texas

2. Corpus Christi, Texas

3. Lincoln, Nebraska

4. Greensboro, North Carolina

5. Tucson, Arizona


A photo posted by Visit Tucson (@visittucson) on

Although Los Angeles is known for its traffic delays, it is doesn't even make the three as cities that make it the most difficult for commuters. In fact, New York City, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, San Francisco and Detroit round out the top five worst cities to be a driver.

ALSO: A Former Car Salesman Reveals His Scam Stories