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According to the Texas Transportation Institute's latest study on traffic congestion, all urban areas have experienced increased congestion in the seventeen-year period from 1982 to 2009, but congestion has changed little from 1999 to 2009. As expected, traffic congestion is worse in very large urban areas, but congestion has grown in small areas, too. The amount of time commuters in private vehicles waste due to congestion has more than doubled from 1982 to 2009 for each of the urban areas shown.

Average Annual Hours Wasted Per Commuter Due to Congestion by Urban Area Size Category, 1982, 1999 and 2009
Bar graph showing the average annual hours wasted per commuter due to congestion by urban area size category (small, medium, large, and very large) in 1982, 1999, and 2009. For more detailed information, see supporting information below.

Note:
For commuters in private vehicles.

Definitions:
Small Urban Areas – Less than 500,000 population.
Medium Urban Areas – Over 500,000 but less than 1 million population.
Large Urban Areas – Over 1 million and less than 3 million population.
Very Large Urban Areas – Over 3 million population.

Supporting Information

Average Annual Hours Wasted Per Commuter Due to Congestion by Urban Area Size Category, 1982, 1999 and 2009
Urban Area 1982 1999 2009
Small 5 17 18
Medium 7 21 22
Large 9 32 31
Very Large 19 49 50

Source: Texas Transportation Institute, 2010 Urban Mobility Report, December 2010.

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