PORTLAND,Ore. -- Traffic congestion is more than a nuisance for commuters -- a new study indicates it's costing Oregon jobs.
Thestudywas put together by TRIP, a non-profit group that studies transportation issues. Theirfindingswere unveiled Thursdayat a press conference organized by the Portland Business Alliance.
Business leaders hope it will prompt lawmakers to speed up their response to addressing regional traffic congestion. The number one ranked chokepoint is no surprise, it's the Columbia River Crossing.
The top five problem spots are all located in the Portland area at interchanges along I-5 and I-205. According to the study, Oregon is failing to attract many new jobs because of challenges relating to moving goods and services.
Long haul truckers seem to agree with the findings.
It's about the same as Los Angeles, it's very congested here, said Tamie Cole a long haul trucker from Kentucky.
Business leaders say traffic congestion impacts everyone, even Oregonians who don't drive.
The cost of congestion in Oregon will run upwards of 1.7 billion dollars annually, said David Knowles, western region transit leader at CH2M Hill.
The study says adding lanes and improving interchanges would add thousands of jobs to the area each year.
Business leaders say the study does not recommend specific solutions, but points out that lawmakers need to make some decisions immediately, especially with the Columbia River Crossing.
For a list of the Top 50 Traffic Chokepoints in Oregon click here.