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Traffic Back To 2019 Levels On Massachusetts Roads, Highway Administrator Says

BOSTON (CBS) -- This is one aspect of "normal" that nobody around Boston missed: Traffic is back to pre-pandemic levels in Massachusetts, a MassDOT official confirmed Monday.

"Traffic, for all intents and purposes, is back to about 2019 levels on most roadways in Massachusetts at this point," Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver said at a board meeting. "We are certainly seeing a return to a lot of previous travel times."

Gulliver said one exception is that the Mass Pike "at certain segments is running a little bit lower, especially the closer you get to Boston."

But other roads are even busier than they were before COVID hit. The I-93 Southeast Expressway between the Braintree Split and the Mass Ave Connector is seeing travel times exceeding 2019 at rush hour. Route 24 between I-93 and Route 27 is also seeing southbound travel times exceeding 2019 levels in the morning.

return of traffic
The return of traffic in the Boston area (Image credit: MassDOT)

There are some different traffic patterns that have emerged as people return to work, Gulliver said. It's not clear how long that will last.

"People seem to be traveling shorter trips and they are mostly mid-day trips," he said. "I think we're in for a really major adjustment period that's going to occur throughout the fall."

A MassDOT study back in 2019 found that traffic in the state had reached a "tipping point."



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