The U.S. Metros With the Best

And the Most Miserable—Commutes

The realtor.com® data team jumped into the driver's seat to separate the best metros for commuting from the ones that make you fantasize about telecommuting—or moving. Best metros for commuters

Some metros have clear roadways and transit options that whisk caffeine-fueled and -deprived commuters to work. Others are all about punishing traffic, buses that never show up, and trains that arrive about as often as presidential apologies.

So what makes a metro a great place for commuters? Consistent travel times, mostly, says Joseph L. Schofer, professor of civil and environmental engineering at Northwestern University. “That comes from well-managed road networks, limited congestion, quick incident-clearance times, and [bus and rail] transit [options],” he says.

The realtor.com data team looked at a variety of criteria in the 150 largest metros, to find the best and worst places for commuters. We analyzed:*                   

                                                                                               Worst metros for commuters

  • Average commute time for drivers, carpoolers, and public transportation riders
  • Average number of hours spent in traffic congestion
  • Percentage of roads in “good” or “fair” condition
  • Percentage of bridges that are “structurally deficient”

So grab your morning joe and hop in! First, let's head over to the places where commuters are at peace. 

Now that you know the best places, let's run you through the worst. There are three staples in these cities: death, taxes, and traffic jams.


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