- US-101 (CA) ranked as the most detested in the nation by drivers.
- Another Georgia routes includes I-85.
Whether it’s the notorious Interstate 345 in Dallas or the infamous Route 29 in Trenton, NJ, many highways across the U.S. contend for the unenviable title of being the most detested by their daily commuters. Sometimes there is nothing worse than reaching the crest of a hill on a freeway, with the city’s shimmering silhouette appearing in the distance, when a relentless tide of brake lights paints a different picture.
Gunther Volvo Cars Daytona Beach ran a survey of 3,000 drivers to determine, once and for all, America’s most loathed interstates/freeways/highways. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the top 3 positions all went to California freeways. The results were as follows:
1. California, US-101
A Golden Gridlock… The Golden State’s golden child of gridlock, US-101 takes the crown, with parts in San Francisco and LA making drivers question their life choices. Many drivers report that they think of it as a highway doing an impression of a parking lot, especially during peak hours. With major tourist hubs along the way, the traffic pace can decelerate to speeds slower than an average person’s walking pace, particularly noticeable during high-density travel times.
2. California, I-5
Snail’s Stretch… Silver goes to this extensive stretch – I-5, especially through LA, could give snails a run for their money. From San Diego to Oregon, it’s the backbone of the West Coast, but sometimes feels more like a spinal tap with its endless construction zones and “rush hour” that seems to last all day. More than mere congestion, the I-5 in LA represents a unique intersection of diverse populations, relentless urbanization, and infrastructural growing pains – all on one gridlocked stretch.
#3 California, I-405 (San Diego Freeway)
Latte Lockup… And rounding up the top 3 was another California gem, the I-405 (San Diego Freeway). Some say it is like Los Angeleans’ way of saying, “You thought the 101 was bad? Hold my latte.” Navigating the infamous Sepulveda Pass is akin to conquering a mountain… if that mountain was made of cars. The I-405, with its unique blend of infrastructural, environmental, and cultural factors, occupies a special spot in the hall of fame of American traffic jams, encapsulating the very essence of Los Angeles’ complex relationship with the automobile.
#4 Pennsylvania, I-76 (Pennsylvania Turnpike)
Historic Halt… In fourth, PA throws its hat into the ring with the I-76. It’s a mix of historic charm and modern-day migraines. Imagine a dance floor, but instead of people, it’s cars – shimmying, twirling, and occasionally bumping into each other. Philly and Pittsburgh drivers, especially, know the I-76 tango all too well. Adding to the complexity, the turnpike is peppered with toll plazas that, despite modern EZ-Pass systems, become chokepoints, especially during holiday exoduses. And the weather – rain, snow or shine, each brings its own set of chaos.
#5 Colorado, I-70
Rocky Road… Claiming fifth, Colorado’s I-70 is not just your everyday road trip – it’s an epic saga. This isn’t just about the stop-and-go; it’s about battling Mother Nature herself as you weave through the Rockies. With the Eisenhower Tunnel acting as the gateway to winter wonder (or blunder), travelers often find themselves playing a game of “Will it close today?” due to snowstorms. Roadway improvements and seasonal restrictions for non-equipped vehicles attempt to mitigate these issues, but they introduce their own delays, with travelers often facing mandatory detours or chain-ups during winter storms.
And in 14th place overall is Georgia’s I-85. This vital highway is not just a road but a central thread in the fabric of Atlanta’s bustling transportation network, often clogged with a mix of local commuters, interstate travelers, and commercial vehicles. Its path, which carves through major business sectors and merges with several key routes, including the notoriously busy I-285, makes it a magnet for congestion. Adding to the complexity, ongoing urban development and roadway expansion projects frequently reshape its lanes and exits, sometimes catching even the most seasoned drivers off guard. The result is a stretch of road where heavy traffic, sudden slowdowns, and swift lane changes are the norm, fueling commuter frustrations and an above-average incidence of accidents. In this way, I-85 becomes more than a highway – it’s a daily gauntlet for those navigating the thriving metropolis of Atlanta.
And the 44th most loathed route in America is Georgia’s I-285. This loop around Atlanta is infamous for its traffic jams and frequent accidents. I-285, known as “The Perimeter,” is Atlanta’s bustling highway ring, notorious for its relentless congestion and high accident frequency. This pivotal 64-mile loop shoulders a heavy burden, channeling local and through traffic, including myriad heavy trucks due to its crucial intersection with major arteries like I-75, I-85, and I-20. Proximity to key destinations, including the world’s busiest Hartsfield-Jackson airport and various commercial hubs, amplifies traffic volume. Compounded by Atlanta’s rapid growth, the highway’s intricate jigsaw of merges and exits becomes a hotspot for accidents, making delays an everyday expectation for the city’s commuters. This continuous cycle reinforces I-285’s status as a challenging yet indispensable segment of Atlanta’s transportation network.