Guess where the worst traffic nightmare in the USA is …
A new report finds the worst traffic bottleneck in America is right here in New Jersey.
The analysis, done by the American Transportation Research Institute, a group that conducts studies for the trucking industry, examined data collected from 300 locations across the nation.
Fort Lee is the worst, according to Rebecca Brewster, the president of the American Transportation Institute.
The worst bottle-necking measured by the study is where Route 95 and State Road 4 meet on the New Jersey side of the George Washington Bridge, also site of that infamous, politically motivated traffic jam created by officials in Gov. Chris Christie's administration.
She said this particular stretch of highway, which was ranked second worst last year, has moved into the top spot because “we know that particular location is under construction, and we often see construction leading to increased congestion adding into those slower speeds.”
The Port Authority is replacing more than 500 suspension cables on the GWB and one lane is being closed during off-peak hours.
She noted during peak travel times, vehicles are approaching the bridge at 23 mph.
While the data measures average truck speeds, all vehicles on the highway are affected by the conditions trucks are facing.
Two other locations in the Garden State also made the top 100 worst bottlenecks list: Route 287 in Piscataway is No. 78 and Routes 76 and 676 in Camden is No. 90.
The report finds rush-hour periods speeds at those locations are 40 mph or less.
Brewster said it’s not surprising New Jersey has a lot of traffic congestion and bottlenecks because “you have highly populated areas where there’s tremendous demand for the consumer goods that are all delivered by truck. There are simply more vehicles on the road than the roadway has capacity for.”
To avoid the worst slowdowns, drivers need to be flexible, she said.
“If you have the opportunity to shift your schedule a little bit so you’re not hitting it at the worst time, it’s important to do so.”
The state with the most bottlenecks in the country is Texas, with 13. California is next.
You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com