Even with kids learning remotely and most people working from home, it's still possible to pull onto a highway in the middle of the afternoon and be met with congestion.
In its annual Texas' Most Congested Roadways report, released December 1, Texas A&M Transportation Institute analyzed 1,800 sections of roadway, covering almost 10,000 miles in areas ranging from the wilds of West Texas to highly populated neighborhoods inside major cities.
Dallas had three roadways show up in the top 10:
- Woodall Rogers Freeway between US 75 and N. Beckley Ave. (4th)
- Stemmons Freeway (I-35E) between John Carpenter Freeway (SH 183) and Tom Landry Freeway (I-30) (8th)
- US 75 between LBJ Freeway (I-635) and Woodall Rogers Freeway (No. 9)
So, pretty much any way you try to drive into or around downtown. Fifteen more local roadways made the top 100 list, available here.
Surprisingly, though, Dallas highways are not the most congested in Texas. That distinction goes to a portion of Interstate 35 in Austin, particularly the stretch from 290 North to 71/Ben White Boulevard that cuts by downtown. (This is one spot up from 2019 when it was named the state's second most congested roadway.)
To help come up with its rankings, TAMU also examined congestion by the number of extra hours of travel time (aka "delays") for commuters, how much fuel is wasted sitting in traffic, and how costly those delays actually are to the economy.
It's also important to note that this report reflects data from 2019, so any commute changes caused by the pandemic won't show up until next year's report, which TAMU Transportation Institute expects to look very different.
Though Austin's stretch of I-35 was first on the most congested list, Houston had six in the top 10 — the most of any city.