A newly published report shows Washington State has one more feather to tack away in its collective cap.
The study, conducted by WalletHub, confirms what most of us already know: that the Evergreen State is, without a doubt, one of the best places in the country for traffic-trapped commuters to abandon their vehicles and walk the rest of the way in to the office.
In fact, it’s the second best place to do so.
“We utilized several metrics to measure how conducive an area was to drivers engaging in this activity, including the overuse of expensive toll lanes during critical commute times, how inflated traveling times typically were, and most importantly, the overall negativity of the driving experience for its residents,” said head researcher Jonathan Gibbs.
For each state, researchers assigned values to each metric and averaged them out.
Washington received a respectably high score of 68.2. The only state which scored higher was Hawaii, with a strikingly impressive 84.3.
So which state fared the worst, according to this study? Which state was the least friendly to drivers leaving their empty cars on the highway and enjoying the last few miles on foot? That would be Texas, with its low commute times and open highways nearly devoid of traffic. The Lone Star State netted an abysmal 13.6.
Washington drivers speaking to reporters on the subject were not at all surprised with the group’s findings, but most did express a desire to see Washington edge out Hawaii before the study’s next round.
“It’s not every day you find out that Washington State is the second best place in the country to do something. It’s pretty neat, but I really think we should be aiming for the number one spot,” said Lynnwood woman Jolene Prophet.
“I mean, I ditch my car near the 85th street exit just about every morning. Sometimes, even as far north as Northgate,” she added.
WSDOT was quick to respond to the report’s findings.
“Hawaii, enjoy the good news while it lasts. Just know that we Washingtonians are a determined lot, and it won’t be long before our roadways will be just as cluttered with discarded vehicles as yours are,” said the agency in a statement.
The spokesman added that even though these results were indeed encouraging, the agency wanted to stress that much more work remained in further souring the state’s general driving experience.