- More than 54 million Americans are expected to hit the road this week for Thanksgiving travel.
- A video of Los Angeles posted Tuesday night showed how bad the traffic already is on the city’s notorious freeways.
- Elon Musk’s Boring Company can’t open its tunnels soon enough for frustrated LA drivers – but it remains to be seen how effective they will be at mitigating congestion.
More than 24 hours before Thanksgiving, Los Angeles freeways were already packed to the brim with motorists.
A video tweeted by NBC Los Angeles on Tuesday night showed just how welcome anything to reduce traffic congestion would be.
Of course, Los Angeles is notorious for its traffic on a normal workday, and Thanksgiving travellers are only making the situation worse. More than 54 million Americans are expected to hit the road this week for holiday travel, according to AAA.
But there could soon be hope for the thousands of people stuck in crawling LA traffic. The first tunnel by Elon Musk’s Boring Company – which wants to reduce congestion via a system of underground tunnels, along the same right-of-way as freeways, that transports passengers in pods – is set to open December 10 in Hawthorne, the billionaire has said.
It has begun. This time-lapse video shows how holiday traffic is making the commute just north of LAX light up like a Christmas tree. ???? https://t.co/maHIKOARl8 #LAtraffic pic.twitter.com/pmSxVZ7ZRS
— NBC Los Angeles (@NBCLA) November 21, 2018
Weather could also make Thanksgiving travel worse. David Roth, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, told Reuters there’s a substantial chance of heavy rain in California on Thursday.
Critics have said Musk’s plan to ease traffic congestion wouldn’t work as well as public transit, especially since a pod would be limited to 16 people. (Subway cars, for example, can carry upwards of 100 passengers, and a bus can carry dozens of people.) What’s more, costs that have historically plagued would-be tunnel builders are still astronomical.
For now, you’re better off leaving bright and early on Thursday for holiday travel, if you haven’t already. According to data from Google, 4 a.m. is your best bet to beat LA traffic. Here’s how congestion peaks over the holiday:
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