Melissa’s Blog

Weekdays 6-10am

388964 01: Commuter traffic makes it way along Interstate 93 May 8, 2001 in Boston MA. According to a study by the Texas Transportation Institute, 1.2 million people drive into Boston for work each day. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Newsmakers)

The MassDot twitter account announced they had been notified of a planned protest set to take place this morning in Boston. According to the tweet: “Advisory for #Boston area travelers: a protest group has notified the media it plans to disrupt travel along several routes in the Boston area Wednesday morning, 9/21, at approximately 7 a.m. Exact locations not yet announced.”

The name of the protest group is Extinction Rebellion, which describes itself as “a politically non-partisan international movement movement that uses non-violent direct action to persuade governments to act justly on the Climate and Ecological Emergency.” According to their website, they’re calling on protestors to meet at 7 a.m. in Post Office Square where they’ll start marching through downtown Boston at 7:30 a.m.  The protest will include a giant sun puppet and colorful banners and flags.  They are also promising coffee and donuts to anyone involved. This is the same group who had 8 members arrested for hanging a banner on the Citgo sign that read “Climate Justice Now.” Here is the official statement posted on the website www.xrboston.org

“Join us early Wednesday morning as we meet rush hour commuters to make some noise and demand “Stop the Fossil Fuel Industry, Now!”

We’ll have a giant sun puppet, colorful banners and flags – plus coffee and donuts for the Morning Rebels!

We’ll meet at Post Office Square at 7am and start to march through downtown Boston at 7:30am.

Accessibility
Wheelchair accessible, will involve walking, or rolling, down the street.”

Officials have been very quiet about which specific streets they feel will be affected. It’s probably safe to say that if you can work from home today, do it. If you can’t work from home, allow yourself some extra time to get to work or consider taking the MBTA if that’s an option for you. Good luck!

Cities with the worst commutes in Massachusetts

When the COVID-19 pandemic made millions of Americans remote workers, it also abruptly ended the commutes that bookend the workday. As some of those workers return to the office, conversations around the drawbacks of commutes have become more vocal. For a while, those workers enjoyed more time in the morning and evening that wasn’t spent simply traveling to and from work—an unpaid portion of the day that nevertheless eats up time and energy. And it’s not a small amount of time, either: Pre-pandemic, the average commute in the U.S. was a hair over 27 minutes one way, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. It was a record high. Cumulatively, 27 minutes each way translates to 54 minutes a day, or four-and-a-half hours per week. That’s 18 hours a month and 216 hours a year spent commuting.

Those who commute know it’s anything but idyllic. While a very small portion of workers live in the ideal scenario—a short, walkable distance from the office, along a sidewalk that is presumably regularly shoveled in the winter and where the temperature doesn’t result in a sweaty arrival in the summer—most endure clogged roads, unpredictable public transit, and the frustrations that come with. Of course, not all commutes are as bad as others, and some cities have better public transit and traffic flow. Stacker compiled a list of the cities with the worst commutes in Massachusetts using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Cities with at least 5,000 working adults are ranked by the longest average commute time as of the 2019 5-year estimate.

  • #20. Arlington

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 33.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 41.1%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 13.7%

  • #19. Weymouth

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 33.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 48%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 19.6%

  • #18. Newburyport

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 33.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 50.4%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 20.6%

  • #17. Winchester

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 33.9
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 38.3%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 13.7%

  • #16. Milton

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 33.9
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 41.8%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 15.5%

  • #15. Reading

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 34.4
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 44.5%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 20.5%

  • #14. Chelsea

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 34.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 44.3%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 17.6%

  • #13. Winthrop

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 34.8
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 33.4%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 15%

  • #12. Swampscott

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 35.4
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 44.9%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 25%

  • #11. Braintree

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 35.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 43.2%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 20.7%

  • #10. Abington

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.1
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 43.6%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 22.9%

  • #9. Melrose

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.4
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 37.6%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 17.9%

  • #8. Holbrook

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.5
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 45.3%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 23.2%

  • #7. Quincy

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.6
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 38.%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 20.7%

  • #6. Franklin

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.7
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 42.4%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 20.5%

  • #5. Malden

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 36.8
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 33.1%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 18.2%

  • #4. Everett

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 37.2
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 35.9%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 21.5%

  • #3. Hull

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 38.3
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 46.3%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 25.1%

  • #2. Marblehead

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 38.5
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 43.8%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 33%

  • #1. Randolph

    – Average time spent commuting to work (minutes): 39.1
    — Percent of workers spending less than 30 minutes commuting: 39.2%
    — Percent of workers spending more than an hour commuting: 25.6%

Boston Traffic

388964 01: Commuter traffic makes it way along Interstate 93 May 8, 2001 in Boston MA. According to a study by the Texas Transportation Institute, 1.2 million people drive into Boston for work each day. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Newsmakers)