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Region Matters Thought Leadership

Teleworking and Social Distancing Push Traffic Down, Air Quality Up

By Paul Donsky

A quick check of your favorite mapping app makes it clear: traffic congestion has eased during these shelter-in-place times.

Even during rush hour, major highways are bathed in a sea of green, signifying free-flowing traffic. Now, we have some numbers that show just how much congestion has declined, and what that means for air quality.

According to the state Department of Transportation, traffic volumes on major highway corridors are down between 31% and 52%. The Downtown Connector southbound, for example, saw an average daily traffic counts drop from 149,000 in 2019 to 89,000 this year, a 40% reduction. Read on.


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