Rush hour is a bit of a misnomer, really. Nobody’s rushing, because nobody can move in the bumper-to-bumper, standstill traffic that occurs during these commuting hours. While it’s usually bad in most places, it's even worse in some locales.
Mexico City has the dubious honor of having the worst traffic, where drivers spend almost 60 percent of extra travel time stuck in traffic, on average, for any given day, Dutch navigation and mapping product producer TomTom revealed yesterday. Its list of cities with the worst rush-hour traffic congestion for 2015 measured congestion on the roads of 295 cities around the world. During peak travel times, like morning and evening work commutes, the amount of extra travel time jumps up to 103 percent.
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The rest of the top five include Bangkok, Istanbul — the 2014 winner, which dropped two spots to number three — Rio de Janeiro and Moscow. Rio de Janeiro is one of three Brazilian cities to make the top 10, alongside Salvador and Recife. The only American city to make the top 10 is Los Angeles. Drivers in the city of angels can expect an increase in travel time of more than 40 percent due to congestion.
Other cities in the United States shouldn’t celebrate just yet. In the rankings for the most congested cities in North America, six of the top 10 locations are American cities. Los Angeles is the highest ranked at number two, followed by San Francisco and New York in spots three and five. Also included in the top 10 are Seattle, Honolulu and Miami.
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Globally, congestion has risen by 13 percent since 2008 — when TomTom started recording this data — but the breakdown between North America and Europe is surprising in how different the increases in these areas have been. While Europe’s congestion has risen by 2 percent, North America’s has increased by 17 percent. The study mentions, however, that there could be economic reasons for the disparity. The North American economy has grown, which means more people are working and therefore, there are more people are on the roads.