Saturday, January 29, 2011

We're #1! We're #1!

States, cities, and regions are known to promote things for which they are predominant. Idaho potatoes. Maryland crabs. New Orleans' Bourbon St. attractions. Chicago Style pizza. Memphis blues. New England chowders.

Notwithstanding that trend, there's a very low likelihood that the greater DC region will be proclaiming their number one status in this area.
Bad, but perhaps unsurprising news for area commuters: A new report indicates drivers in the Washington region lead the country in time, money and gas wasted in traffic.

D.C. drivers spend about 70 hours every year in road congestion, according to the 2010 Urban Mobility Report, considered the authority on traffic rankings.

This is the worst delay in the country.
We're #1! We're #1! Ah, crap!

By the way, this is the second time in the past three years DC has achieved #1 status.

As someone who has endured this hell on Earth for over 23 years, I have say that Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia are absolutely guilty of economic malfeasance in their inattention to regional highway construction.

"Vulture! Highways are expensive!" So is gridlock. How many billions of dollars are lost to this region every year because of our grossly inadequate highway system?

"You should take mass transit!" Really? Mass transit in this reason is designed under the paradigm of traffic filtering into the District in the morning and out to Maryland and Virginia in the evening. So how, exactly, does that help someone like me, who lives in Maryland but works in Virginia? I'll tell you how: not at all!

This is NOT a region where mass transit can be the only solution to the problem. There are too may consultants, contractors, and other non-traditional employment types for that to work.

But it's not going to the change. Highways will never be a high priority in People's Republics like Maryland and the District of Columbia. And Richmond absolutely HATES Northern Virginia, considering its citizens to be yankees. Getting money out of Richmond for NoVa is like getting child support from a rapper. It COULD happen. It's just not likely.

But hey! It's nice for DC to be famous for something besides government waste and corruption, right?