Busiest Highways In America: Top 28 Highways

Can you list the busiest highways in America that you know? Well, we have a complete list for you. 

If you have a meeting or plan to arrive at your destination early, avoiding these congested routes would make complete sense. 

Traveling through a busy highway can be frustrating. In addition to wasting time, you’ll waste gas. Also, there’s a tendency that you’ll arrive at your destination late and tired. 

So, let’s discuss the congested highways in the United States of America and how slow these routes are. Keep scrolling down for more information. 

1: Fort Lee: I-95 at SR 4 – New Jersey

Peak Average Speed: 20.2 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 29.5 mph

Average Speed: 26.8 mph

The number one busiest highway in America is Fort Lee. It boasts an average non-peak speed of 29.5 miles per hour. This makes it the slowest highway on this list. So, if you want to get to where you’re going fast, avoid this highway at all costs. 

The interchange is the one that connects Interstate 95 with the State Route in New Jersey, Fort Lee, to be precise. It’s a crucial road for people entering or leaving New York City, meaning millions use it daily. So, the traffic is super high.

Over 100 million vehicles are reportedly passing the bridge spanning the Hudson River between New York City and Fort Lee, New Jersey.        

2: Chicago: I-290 at I-90/I-94

Peak Average Speed: 18.2 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 25.3 mph

Average Speed: 23.5 mph

Though Chicago is a transportation hub, the congestion between Interstate 290 makes it a scary route. From the average speed information above, it’s one of the slowest highways in the United States of America.     

Note that Interstate 290 ranks as Chicago’s most important road link. It is officially called the Dwight D. Eisenhower Expressway.  

3: Chicago: I-294 at I-290/I-88

Peak Average Speed: 37.8 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 48.3 mph

Average Speed: 45.2 mph

The traffic congestion on this highway is on another level. The detail of the average speed average tells the story. This road features a complex network comprising various highways. 

Another thing you must understand is that the interchange between Interstate 294, 290, and 188 is a challenging route to drive on. Thanks to the commuters and heavy trucks, you will spend a lot of gas driving super slow on this highway. 

Keep in mind that many vehicles use this three-way interchange. This route is south of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, dubbed the fourth busiest airport in the world. 

4: Atlanta: I-20 at I-285 (West)

Peak Average Speed: 36.3 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 43.8 mph

Average Speed: 41.6 mph

The strategic location of the Atlanta interchange is among the reasons it is massive slow. This isn’t a recommended route to pass if you’re in a hurry. 

The traffic on this highway is super heavy. Thus, drivers are forced to drive slowly. Its location, which happens to be within the city’s transportation network, contributes to the heavy traffic. 

So, if you plan to pass through this highway, remove every thought of driving fast. You can’t. It is one of the busiest and slowest highways in Atlanta and the United States of America. 

5: I-71 at I-75

Location: Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

Peak Average Speed: 43.0 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 48.8 mph

Average Speed: 47.2 mph

Have you ever tried passing this highway? If you haven’t, try not to. Why? You’ll crawl during the peak hours. You might even regret embarking on the trip in the first place. 

Is the traffic situation getting any better? No, it isn’t. It has even gotten worse than it was years ago. 

6: Los Angeles: SR 60 at SR 57

Peak Average Speed: 35.7 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 45.2 mph

Average Speed: 42.6 mph

Los Angeles is another city with one of the busiest highways in the country. The city’s massive urban landscape means traffic congestion will always be a significant problem for commuters.

State Roads 57 and 60 are the country’s busiest and slowest highway junctions. During peak hours, over 380,000 cars pass through this route. 

7: Los Angeles: I-710 at I-105

Peak Average Speed: 28.5 mph

 Non-Peak Average Speed: 42.8 mph 

Average Speed: 37.9 mph

Here comes another highway in Los Angeles most people don’t want to consider passing. The peak speed is 28.5 mph, lower than the State Roads 57 and 60. 

The extensive freeway system in southern California has offered massive benefits to the state. It is an essential route to the region’s economy. 

Unfortunately, this route is a pain for drivers. If you have ever transported goods via this route, you’ll understand the pain of driving past it. You’ll spend a lot of time here.  

8: Houston: I-45 at I-69/US 59

Peak Average Speed: 21.7 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 35.8 mph

Average Speed: 31.1 mph

It is impossible to mention places with the largest metropolitan areas in the United States of America without including Houston, Texas. But with such size comes a higher population and high traffic volumes. 

The shocking thing about Houston’s traffic situation is that cars aren’t the only automobiles responsible for the traffic congestion the city experiences. Commercial trucks are also part of the traffic. 

It takes longer to travel through I-45 at I-69. It is one of the busiest roads in the country. 

9: San Bernardino: I-10 at I-15

Location: California

Peak Average Speed: 34.1 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 44.7 mph

Average Speed: 41.7 mph

Have you been to San Bernardino? Have you passed the interchange of I-10 and 1-15? You could be stuck on this highway for longer than expected. 

Why the heavy traffic in this region? The primary cause is the movement of goods. These goods are transported by heavy trucks, a major contributor to traffic congestion in the state. 

Trucks aren’t the only automobiles to blame. Cars also contribute to the traffic congestion in San Bernardino. So, the traffic congestion is caused by commuters and the transportation of goods.  

10: Nashville: I-24/I-40 at I-440 (East)

Location: Nashville, Tennessee, USA 

Peak Average Speed: 30.6 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 46.2 mph

Average Speed: 41.4 mph

The interchange of I-24/I-40 and I-440 are routes you don’t want to pass through if you’re in a hurry. The traffic congestion on this highway will leave you frustrated.  

At peak hours, the average speed is around 30.6 mph. During the non-peak hours, they experience an average speed of 46.2 mph.  

This highway is getting busier every year. In just a year, the average speed has dropped massively. We can only hope for things to get better pretty soon.   

11: Atlanta: I-285 at I-85 (North)

Peak Average Speed: 28.5 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 42.4 mph

Average Speed: 38.1 mph

Atlanta, Georgia’s capital, isn’t a name that will appear new to some people. If you have passed through the interchange between I-285 and I-85, you’ll understand why this region scares most commuters. 

The reason for the traffic congestion in this region is understandable. It is a vital connection point for interstate travel. 

You can see the peak average speed. That should tell you how busy this route can be during peak hours. You’ll be traveling at 22 mph during peak hours. That is how annoyingly slow the interchange between I-285 and I-85 can be.     

12: I-75 at I-285 (North)

Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA

Do you reside in Atlanta? If you do, congratulations! This city has appeared on this list multiple times, showing how busy it can be. 

You may have found yourself stuck on one of the busy highways in the city, possibly at the interchange between I-75 and I-285 or another route. 

13: Atlanta, GA: I-285 at SR 400

Peak Average Speed: 33.6 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 43.7 mph

Average Speed: 40.7 mph

The “Perimeter,” as it is fondly called, is one of the worst in the aspect of highways with the most traffic congestion. Those who have traveled through Interstate 285 understand the pain it takes to pass through this route. 

The interchange is close to multiple hospitals, including the Perimeter Mall. So, there is a high tendency for it to receive increased traffic congestion daily, especially during peak periods. 

14: McDonough, GA: I-75

Peak Average Speed: 42.8 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 48.7 mph

Average Speed: 47.0 mph

McDonough isn’t the biggest city in America. It could even be a tiny part of most major cities in the country. However, it sits on Interstate 75 between Macon and Atlanta, which makes it a super busy route. 

It is a small city with massive traffic congestion. It’s not an official nickname; it’s just a suggestion.  

15: Chicago, IL: I-80 at I-94

Peak Average Speed: 44.8 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 48.0 mph

Average Speed: 47.1 mph

This route is usually busy during peak hours, but not so much. You can still travel at a speed of 44.8 mph during peak average. So, the traffic congestion here is not as terrible as in most places on this list.  

16: Houston, TX: I-10 at I-45

Peak Average Speed: 27.7 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 45.2 mph

Average Speed: 39.2 mph

Houston has appeared on this list again for the same reason: traffic congestion. Interstate 10 is considered one of the slowest highways in the country. During peak hours, you can expect to travel at 27.7 mph. It can be that slow and frustrating.   

But what is the reason? This route features 26 lanes across its widest section. It is by far the most expansive highway in America. 

17: Denver, CO: I-70 at I-25:

Peak Average Speed: 30.7 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 43.1 mph

The high traffic volume experienced during peak hours makes traveling through Denver, I-70, a journey one shouldn’t embark on. 

This highway’s peak average speed is 30.7 mph. That means you will be traveling at a relatively slow speed during rush hours. 

If you have someone urgent to go, passing through this highway isn’t a good option. The average peak speed makes it one of the busiest highways in the country. 

18: Baton Rouge, LA: I-10 at I-110

Peak Average Speed: 30.7 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 42.0 mph

With an average speed similar to the Denver Co, I-70, this Baton Rouge highway is congested and slow. It boasts an average peak speed of 30.7 mph, meaning you’ll travel very slowly on this highway. 

So, if you’re planning to pass through the I-10, abort that mission. 

19: Stamford, CT: I-95:

Peak Average Speed: 30.4 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 43.4 mph

If you plan to travel through the I-95 highway, rethink your decision. It is one of the most congested highways in the country. 

The average peak speed is 30.4 mph. Keep that in mind before you embark on your journey. Anyway, that was in 2022. We hope the traffic congestion on this highway will lessen in the future.    

20: Brooklyn, NY: I-278 at Belt Parkway

Peak Average Speed: 30.3 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 41.4 mph

Another congested route is the Brooklyn, NY I-278. This highway is super busy, though not the busiest on this list. 

But before you enter this highway and start driving, remember that the average peak speed is 30.3 mph. It is slower than the Stamford, CT, I-95. 

21: Portland, OR: I-5 at I-84

Peak Average Speed: 29.6 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 38.8 mph

The non-peak average speed tells the story. It indicates how slow this highway is. Here, you’ll travel at an average peak speed of 30.2 mph.   

22: Atlanta, GA: I-75 at I-85

Peak Average Speed: 29.4 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 42.3 mph

Atlanta has another congested highway. And this time, we’re talking about the interchange of interstate I-75 at I-85. 

The peak average speed of this highway decreased massively between 2021 and 2022. It dropped to 29.4 mph. 

23: Boston, MA: I-93 at SR 3

Peak Average Speed: 29.2 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 44.5 mph

Before you start traveling down the I-93, keep in mind that the highway is a busy one. How busy? You’ll find yourself traveling at an average peak speed of 29.2 mph. 

So, if you reside in Boston, Massachusetts, think before you pass through the I-93, especially during peak hours. 

24: Oakland, CA: I-80 at I-580/I-880

Peak Average Speed: 29.0 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 38.6 mph 

Do you reside in north California? If yes, you must have traveled down the I-80 at the I-580/I-880. Additionally, you must have experienced traffic congestion during peak hours. 

The average peak speed of the I-80 is 29 mph, making this highway one of the country’s busiest and most congested.  

25: Seattle, WA: I-5 at I-90

Peak Average Speed: 27.4 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 38.6 mph

Every resident in Washington knows the I-5 is one of the scariest highways in the country to pass through. 

On this highway, the average peak speed is 27.4 mph. You’ll be frustrated if you have an appointment and must arrive on time. This isn’t a route to take in such circumstances, though. 

26: Bronx, NY: I-678

Peak Average Speed: 25.4 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 32.2 mph

How congested is the I-678? Well, it is busy and packed. The average peak speed you’ll travel on this highway is 32.4 mph.  

27: Philadelphia, PA: I-76 at I-676

Peak Average Speed: 25.2 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 32.5 mph

Here is another scary route to pass. If you’re a resident of Philadelphia, PA, you’ll know a thing or two about this highway. 

I-76 is a busy route. During peak hours, the traffic congestion can be very frustrating. The average peak speed gets as low as 25.2 mph. That tells you how congested the highway can get. So, avoid rush hour if you plan to travel through this highway.     

28: Austin, TX: I-35:

Peak Average Speed: 25.0 mph

Non-Peak Average Speed: 39.5 mph

The traffic congestion at the I-35 is getting worse. Around 2021 and 2022, there was an 8.6 percent reduction in average peak speed. 

On the I-35, the average peak speed is 25 mph. Now, you can see how busy this highway can get. 


So, these are the busiest highways in America. They are routes you don’t want to pass through if you’re in a hurry. 

The peak speeds experienced in some of these routes are frustrating. The amount of time spent in traffic congestion makes some highways a terrible option for commuters and truck drivers. 

We shared the average peak speed and other information about the most congested highways in the United States to help you make a quick decision. The information on this page will help you prepare your mind and make an informed decision. 

Francis Stein
Francis Stein
Francis Stein is a writer and traveler who has already traveled most of the states of America. He loves to explore new places and meet new people, and he hopes to continue traveling the world in search of adventure. Francis enjoys writing about his experiences as a way of sharing his love for exploration with others.


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