ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A lot of commuters think they have it bad. Now, a new travel study claims getting around the Albuquerque area is a breeze compared to just about everywhere else. But depending on who you ask, you will get a much different answer as to whether or not they agree.
“Typically, it’s been my experience in the mornings that the traffic is a little heavier,” Rachel Nagy said.
“For a city this size, it’s pretty decent,” Thomas Austad added. “I’ve seen worse.”
“It’s fairly good as long as there’s no construction going on,” Shannon Salyer chimed in.
According to selfstorage.com and its moving blog, the Duke City ranked 5th best in the country for commuters.
“Compared to (Los Angeles), I think this is really good,” said Salyer.
The study also looked at gas prices. Albuquerque is home to some of the lowest.
It also looked at round-trip commuting time, an average of 46 minutes.
“If I’m stuck in rush hour, it can take up to an hour and a half,” Nagy said. “Without that, I can get anywhere in town within 20 minutes.”
“Good time is 30 minutes, bad time is 45 minutes,” Salyer said.
Another component was how commute times have held steady in the past five years. Per the study, those times are down 1.3 percent.
“Overall, I think I’m seeing little improvements here and there,” Austad said.
It didn’t take into account time spent on the road because of construction or long traffic jams caused by crashes.
It did include how many commuters use mass transit, that’s only 9 percent here, which hurt the city’s ranking.
“I’ve been taking the bus for about three years,” Nathan Duran Martinez said. “It’s just cheaper and it gets around.”
Rick De Reyes with ABQ Ride said it needs to be noted that some of Albuquerque’s suburbs don’t have a lot of mass transit.
“So, all of that can skew that sort of survey when it comes to gauging the Albuquerque metro area,” De Reyes said.
So, whether you love it or hate it, driving seems to be a way of life here.
“All in all, it’s a pretty good city to get to and from where you’re going,” Salyer concluded.
One more thing working in commuters’ favor here in Albuquerque, there are no sprawling, highly-populated suburbs like most other big cities do.
Here are the four cities that ranked higher than Albuquerque.
– Oxnard, California – where commute times are tolerable, even though it’s in southern California.
– New York City – the Big Apple came in second because mass transit is so easy there.
– Phoenix – our neighbor to the west here commute times are getting shorter.
– Colorado Springs – the city home to the Garden of the Gods came in fourth for the same reasons as Albuquerque.