Daily Archives: January 29, 2011

Another Article from the Land of D’oh – Jobs and Traffic Jams are Linked

A recent article over on the NYT blogs pointed out the stubborn link between jobs and traffic jams and noted that when the average national unemployment rate reached its lowest point (of 4.6% in 2006), the hours that commuters spent in traffic were 13% less than when the average national unemployment rate was close to its highest point (of 9.3% in 2009).

Why wouldn’t this make sense? The more people working, the more people trying to get to the same business centres at about the same time. The more cars trying to get through the same choke points in traffic flows, the slower traffic is going to go. As long as the personal vehicle is primary mode of transportation, obviously there’s going to be a big connection between employment rate and traffic jams. You don’t need a study to confirm this. Just some common sense (and, if you want to verify your common sense, a mathematical model).