Saying Goodbye to Traffic Forever

The Mission Newsletter, 10/29/18

“They say the universe is expanding. That should help with the traffic.” -Steven Wright

The World’s Last Traffic Jam

The race was by far the biggest in California history. People flocked from all over the country to see which rider would win the champion’s purse. The winner would receive over $20,000 in gold bullion. The morning of the race, thousands arrived in their carriages, took their seats, and waited for the main event. The favorite won, and so did the many gamblers who had placed bets on him.

As 2,000 vehicles tried to leave the racetrack at the same time, something occurred that had never been seen in the city before. A local paper described that:

“[It] was something marvelous to see. The drivers stormed and scolded, the women shrieked and cried, wheels locked at intervals of perhaps ten minutes. [It was] like a huge funeral procession, crawling along at a snail’s pace.”

The final horse-drawn carriages did not leave until early the next morning. The year was 1873 and San Francisco had just experienced its first ever traffic jam…

Listen to Episode 6 of The Future of Cities!

So… How’s that Monday Traffic Treating you?

If you are in the Bay Area (like us!), then this is a view you are all too familiar with…

Here are the 10 Most Traffic-Congested Cities — ranked by hours spent per year in traffic for the average driver.

  • Los Angeles — 102
  • New York City — 91
  • San Francisco — 79
  • Atlanta — 70
  • Miami — 64
  • Washington, D.C. — 63
  • Boston — 60
  • Chicago — 57
  • Seattle — 55
  • Dallas — 54

News that Matters: Trick or Treat Edition

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Saying Goodbye to Traffic Forever was originally published in The Mission on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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