Traffic Congestion in the Boston Region – Beyond the Daily Commute

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May 2019

Traffic conditions in the Boston region are monitored through the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Congestion Management Process (CMP). The purpose of the CMP is to identify locations where congestion occurs and the factors that contribute to it. While most of the CMP’s traffic monitoring focuses on congestion caused by the recurring travel of the daily commutes residents in the region take to and from work in the morning, afternoon, and evening peak travel periods, this study examined incidents that occurred in 2015 when congested roadway conditions developed during times other than the traditional commuting hours.

Seven case studies are included in this report. The specific case studies focused on travel associated with sporting events (Red Sox weekday games and New England Patriots regular season games), a special event (the New England Patriots’ Super Bowl parade), holiday activities (the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and Black Friday), and times not typically monitored by the CMP (Fridays and Saturdays). Each case study details roadway congestion levels, times when congestion occurred, and specific roadway locations where congestion was the worst.

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