September 10, 2010

NFL Games: Worst Traffic Jams DC, New England, Buffalo

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TomTom took a look into their database crystal ball and saw that yes, there are traffic jams at NFL games, and then there are traffic disasters. The worst locations experience a 50+% slowdown in traffic as a result of the games. I can vouch for that as we live close to Gillette Stadium, and you don't want to go near the place on game day if you aren't going to the game.

"The results of this study were calculated using data from the TomTom user community. TomTom compared anonymously contributed GPS measurements and data during the home games for each stadium for the 2009 season with data from TomTom's historical speed database, Speed Profiles(TM). Speed Profiles creates the most accurate view of historical traffic on both primary and secondary roads using data over a two year period. This data is incorporated on TomTom GPS devices as IQ Routes to guide drivers away from congestion, not only on major highways but on all routes in the road network."

If you don't have a TomTom with traffic, you can always go to their Beta Route Planning Site to take advantage of the traffic data. I checked the Sunday Morning predictions around Gillette Stadium, and they must not have that plumbed up, because there doesn't appear to be any traffic predicted ahead of the NE Pat's opener. The service is in Beta, so predictions must not be hooked up. (They are even predicting a traffic free commute out of Boston this afternoon; I don't think so). Definitely worth checking ahead of the game if you are concerned.   At TomTom Route Planner

More details about the traffic jams after the jump.......

As football fans gear up for a new season, a study by location and navigation solutions leader TomTom reveals the worst and best game-day traffic trends around professional stadiums. The latest TomTom study, which compares the average traffic speeds on the immediate major roadways leading to and around the 32 professional football stadiums to the average speeds on non-game days, offers traffic insights for fans across the nation.*

So which fans might end up spending more time in their car than in their seats? According to the TomTom study, the 10 professional football stadiums with the greatest traffic delays were based in Washington D.C., New England, Buffalo, Dallas, Jacksonville, Carolina, Miami, Tennessee, Green Bay, and Atlanta, respectively. While most roadways experienced a slowdown in speed of more than 30 percent, fans in Washington D.C., New England and Buffalo drove 50 percent slower than typical speeds for the same roads.

On the other hand, game day traffic is least affected in Oakland, San Diego, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Cleveland, Baltimore, Denver, and Chicago, with slowdowns of less than 21 percent.

Additional traffic insights from the study include:

-- While one-third of the cities experience the slowest average speeds two hours before games start, fans in cities like Oakland, Miami and Cincinnati are heading to the stadium early as they experience the worst traffic four hours prior.

-- Eight of the 10 professional football stadiums with the greatest game-time delays are based on the East Coast. So, while fans on the West Coast contemplate East Coast biases, it looks like they have the upper hand when it comes to smoother traffic.

-- Fans in New Orleans and St. Louis can expect to experience the overall slowest speeds an hour before the game, as they drive at roughly 10 miles per hour.

"On game days, or any day for that matter, drivers want to be able to get to their destinations faster," said Nhai Cao, senior product manager at TomTom. "With unique access to trillions of GPS measurements provided by our community of over 45 million drivers on an anonymous, opt-in basis, TomTom can consistently deliver our drivers access to the best possible routes via our IQ Routes(TM) technology -- even on game days."

The results of this study were calculated using data from the TomTom user community. TomTom compared anonymously contributed GPS measurements and data during the home games for each stadium** for the 2009 season with data from TomTom's historical speed database, Speed Profiles(TM). Speed Profiles creates the most accurate view of historical traffic on both primary and secondary roads using data over a two year period. This data is incorporated on TomTom GPS devices as IQ Routes to guide drivers away from congestion, not only on major highways but on all routes in the road network.

* Traffic patterns were analyzed over a four hour period prior to kickoff based in data from home games in the 2009 season. Results from Arizona, Tampa Bay and Kansas City were not included due to limited sample size.

**Data was not collected for games on neutral sites, i.e. Tampa versus New England in London

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Posted by Scott Martin at September 10, 2010 10:34 AM

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