New study says Tampa Bay area traffic congestion is now 15th worst in U.S.

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

The Tampa Bay area is the 15th worst region in the country when it comes to traffic. During afternoon rush hour, 52 percent of commuters in the Tampa metro area stuck in traffic. In the mornings, 34 percent are mired in gridlock, according to the survey.

And June 10 of last year was the single worst day of traffic of the year.

That’s according to the Dutch navigation and mapping company TomTom, in its annual report compiled from 14 trillion GPS reports.

Although it’s nothing to be impressed about, the fact is that it’s an improvement from a year ago, when TomTom listed the region was listed as 11th worst in the nation.

The other part to remember is that in terms of sheer amount of people, the Tampa Bay area is the 11th biggest media market in the U.S., according to Nielsen.

The report comes out a few weeks before the Hillsborough County Commission is finally expected to vote on a possible half-cent sales tax referendum to pay for transportation projects. That proposal would raise an estimated $117 million a year.

Miami is the only other area in Florida ahead of Florida. It’s ranked seventh worst in the nation. Orlando is ranked 16th.

Globally, the Tampa Bay area is ranked as having the 98th worst traffic.

Here the top 15 areas in the nation for traffic congestion, according to TomTom.

1.Los Angeles

2. San Francisco

3. New York City

4. Seattle

5. San Jose

6. Honolulu

7. Miami

8. Washington D.C.

9. Portland (Oregon)

10. Chicago

11. Houston

12. Boston

13. Atlanta

14. San Diego

15. Tampa Bay

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Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.