LA’s Most Improved Evening Commutes

Some freeways are actually faster. No, really.


Warning: This story contains good news.


There are some evening freeway commutes in Los Angeles that are getting better. And the best among them is the 10 West between Downtown and Santa Monica. Evening commutes (4-7 pm) on that stretch improved by 10 percent in this year, rising to 56.8 mph in 2018 from 51.6 mph during the same period in 2017.


Read more on the fastest freeways here.


We analyzed recent speed data for 18 different freeway segments of Los Angeles. We compared average speeds during the evening commute on weekdays from February to June this year (the most recent data available) with last year’s evening rush hour speeds. Just seven of the 18 commutes had improved rush hour speeds.


The average speeds on the 110 North between the 101 and Pasadena have slowed the most of any freeway in Los Angeles. In 2017, the 110 North recorded average evening speeds of 57.9 mph, but this year the 4-7 pm commute dropped to 42.2 mph.



But some routes actually sped up. Determining the cause can be tricky. On the whole, Los Angeles freeway congestion is getting worse. The economy has picked up and more people are commuting to work. In addition, with housing costs rising, many people are commuting from farther away, which means that more miles are being driven overall. Caltrans says that improved speeds can sometimes be the result of a road project that concludes, opening up lanes that had been blocked off. But it did not offer explanations as to why some routes had improved while others slowed. 


You can see our list of most and least improved morning commutes here.


Here is the complete list of freeways, including the changes in speed from 2017 to 2018:



Questions about a specific freeway or commute?


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All the data in this article comes from sensors recording speeds on freeways across LA on weekdays from February through June of 2018 and 2017.


For more information about our traffic data click here.