In 2020, Philadelphia ranked fifth in the world and second in the U.S. for cities with the most traffic congestion, only behind New York City. As a result, Philly drivers lost an average of 94 hours to traffic congestion compared to the national average of 26 hours a year.
ERIC MOODY: According to an INRIX report, in 2020, Philadelphia ranked fifth in the world and second in the United States for cities with the most traffic congestion. With the rise of US gas prices, Philadelphia residents have seen a significant incline at the pump as COVID-19 restrictions begin to lift, and more drivers take the road.
MIKE CARROLL: You look back at 2020 with the pandemic, really what's going on in those numbers is, we went from 12th to 2nd in the United States, yet the congestion overall throughout the country did go down. So what we're looking at is a story where Philadelphia went down less quickly than a lot of other cities, and that says a lot.
ERIC MOODY: Mike Carroll, deputy managing director for OTIS Philly says, despite those stats, the city is working on strategies to improve infrastructure and help people reimagine the future of public transportation alternatives.
MIKE CARROLL: What we really want to think about is how we do get people to really think about taking transit again, biking around if they can do that. We actually put out a transit plan which talks about some near-term improvements we want to make.
ERIC MOODY: OTIS Philly partner SEPTA aims to invest $40 million from federal COVID relief funds to create the KOP Rail. SEPTA's $2 billion King of Prussia rail project will connect commuters from King of Prussia to University City and Center City to offer an extended solution for all.
JODY HOLTON: We anticipate that the King of Prussia rail project will reduce vehicle miles traveled in the Philadelphia region by about 14 to 18 million vehicle miles traveled per year.
ERIC MOODY: This project is just one example of an innovative future plan for Philadelphia and its surrounding areas. Reporting from Philadelphia, Eric Moody, Channel 6 Action News.