Report: Albuquerque commute not great

Posted at: 01/11/2013 5:39 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

A lot of us think one of the benefits of living in Albuquerque is avoiding all of the long commutes and traffic jams you get in bigger cities, but a new survey of drivers from the 2010 census paints a different picture.

Albuquerque's average commute time from home to work is 23.7 minutes, ranking 140th on the Business Journal's On Numbers list of 172 towns in the western U.S.

Traffic engineers blame Albuquerque's fairly long commute on the geography of the far flung metro area, with its open spaces and only 8 bridges across the river.

Cindy Reed commutes every workday from Edgewood - about 50 minutes away.

"They're flexible where I work," said Reed. "If I don't leave like right when the traffic is right, I'm trying to get there at 8. if I take that extra 15 minutes and get to work at 8:15, it's fine."

"My commute is about 15 minutes," said Chase McDonald. "Not too bad. I live just off Montgomery. It's not too bad. Everyone is just trying to rush to work. I give myself plenty of time, take it easy."

"The one thing that bugs me about Albuquerque drivers that I don't notice in other cities is the use of the turn signal," said Chris Dehler. "That kind of hurts me. People don't seem to use it much."

Of course that 23 minute 40 second Albuquerque commute time really means about 47 minutes behind the wheel when you factor in the go-home.

The best in the west is Kodiak, Alaska - an island community where the average commute is 10.4 minutes. In second place is Laramie, Wyoming with a 12.9 minute commute.

The worst is Los Angeles, where the average commute is 28.3 minutes. San Francisco - 28.8 minutes. And - at the absolute bottom of the barrel - Shelton, Washington, of all places, where the average commute is 31.9 minutes.