California and traffic are no strangers, and the majority of people living in the Golden State will at some point complain about the less-than-savory jams that trouble their morning and afternoon commutes. For Bay Area commuters, in particular, the situation appears to be worsening, as many say they have been experiencing the worst traffic of their lives.
— Jonathan Di Blasi (@emptywhiskyglas) August 31, 2014
“Traffic everywhere is worst than it has been,” John Goodwin of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission told CBS local news affiliate KCBS San Francisco.
Goodwin correlated the surge in traffic conditions in the Bay Area to employment: “Whenever you’ve got periods of high employment, you have high demand on the transportation system.” He told CBS that jobs numbers in the Bay Area are at the highest they have ever been in history.
A 2010 Bay Area census found that the region hosts a population of over seven million people. According to KCBS, there are currently 3.6 million people working in the Bay Area, which could make the commute to work feel more than just a little crunched.
KCBS radio host John Atkinson expressed that in his over 25 years of work in his field, he has never seen the traffic this bad. So bad that the traffic has become near-impossible to avoid in even the least likely of places.
“The trip in from the Central Valley, 580 over the Altamont pass, is just absolutely terrible,” Atkinson said. He conveyed that the surge and drop off in Bay Area traffic were most apparent during the first part of the dotcom boom period and then with the great recession, consecutively.
One motorist told CBS that he gets “stuck in an hour of traffic” almost every day, and says that the traffic is only going to get worse.
— Marco Lopez (@markieeLop) August 31, 2014