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Utah Travel Headlines

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Forbes Says It is Easy To Get Around Salt Lake City

Forbes Magazine has just published this article ranking the best and worst US cities for commuters. Salt Lake City is listed as best in the nation.

We've always know it is easy to get around town. Easy for commuters, but also easy for travelers who want to come downtown for business, shopping, night life, or to see Temple Square.

It is also easy to get to our ski resorts from downtown, and from the Salt Lake International Airport, and that contributes to their popularity.

Below are excerpts from the article.

There are a few elements that easy-commuting cities have in common. In those places, more workers take advantage of public transportation, walk or bike; sprawl is minimal so that workers tend to live closer to their offices; and the incidence of travel delays is low.

In Salt Lake City 20% of workers find a way to get to work besides driving alone, which leaves the roads less jammed. It's not an accident that commuters in Salt Lake have it better than elsewhere. The state of Utah has poured resources into initiatives that strengthen the city's infrastructure, including 44 miles of "hot lanes," carpool lanes that single-occupancy drivers can use for a fee, expediting their trip, and special road-construction techniques that minimize interruptions to traffic.

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To find the cities with the best commutes, we measured travel time, road congestion and travel delays for the 60 largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas in the U.S. Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, we calculated what percentage of commuters in each metro area took an hour or more to get to work in each of these cities in 2008, the most recent year for which these data are kept.

To find the areas with the fewest cars on the road, we next factored in the percentage of commuters who carpooled or used alternatives to driving like walking, biking or taking public transportation in 2008. We referred to this as the "green commuter" ranking.

Finally, we looked at the Travel Time Index, a measure that the Texas Transportation Institute, a transportation research organization, uses to measure delays.

Read the entire article.

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