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View Poll Results: Which city is more harrowing to drive through?
LA 12 63.16%
Philly 7 36.84%
Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-02-2011, 12:49 AM
 
433 posts, read 193,491 times
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Wink LA vs. Philly - most harrowing to drive

Inspired by the urbanity thread. Which city do you think is more harrowing to drive in? Personally I would say Philly given the antiquated, narrow highways, narrow city streets, angry drivers, congestion etc. Not to say the 10, 101, and 405 aren't beasts in and of themselves, but I'm sure a trip on the Schuylkill, the Vine or 95 at 5 in the afternoon would leave any LA'er white-knuckled, especially if you're used to 14-lane superhighways, not to mention the Center City gridlock. Besides they don't call it the 'Surekill Expressway' for nothing. Your opinions?
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Old 10-02-2011, 01:53 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia, PA
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My opinion is that L.A. will get more votes. L.A. is ground zero for smog and road rage and to me, that's harrowing. The Hollywood Freeway is famous for congestion. Yes the Skuylkill is a tough road, but it's not making any top-10 lists for worst commute.
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Old 10-02-2011, 02:05 AM
 
Location: philadelphia
160 posts, read 131,405 times
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Driving through the city core on a Saturday night(particularly tonight as I drove through Rittenhouse, grrr) is beastly. Narrow, congested, and chaotic. I find myself very used to driving through the city, I have a pretty easy time driving in most NE cities(Boston, you are the exception) or anything on a grid - I know where I'm going, and I know that I've really only got to worry about the front of my car and where that's going..if someone rear ends me, side-swipes me, etc., it's going to be at such a low speed that it will most likely cause little harm and I'm not going to be at fault. The parking situation can be daunting, and if you want to get anywhere you have to be a bit aggressive(not an inconsiderate jerk though, like many seem to think)

L.A., however is a whole different kind of animal, though. I think I would find that much more nerve-wracking. I have never driven in L.A., but I feel like it would give me a real run for my money. Both are not for the meek, but my vote goes to L.A.

EDIT;

I have to say, the only thing worse than driving through Philly on a Saturday night is biking through Philly on a Saturday night. Yikes!
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Old 10-02-2011, 06:28 AM
 
Location: NYC
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In my experience, LA drivers are pretty mellow compared to most big city drivers. My first time driving in LA was rush hour on the 110, and I was surprised by how chill and non-aggressive everyone was on the road. Since then, I have had more blood-boiling experiences with LA driving, but I still think that overall driving there is relatively non-harrowing for a major city.
Philly's not the worst either, though.
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Old 10-02-2011, 06:33 AM
 
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At street level its clearly Philly due to its narrow, conjested and compact city streets.
At highway level its obviously LA no explanation needed.
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Old 10-02-2011, 07:46 AM
 
Location: The City
18,492 posts, read 14,370,502 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rotodome View Post
In my experience, LA drivers are pretty mellow compared to most big city drivers. My first time driving in LA was rush hour on the 110, and I was surprised by how chill and non-aggressive everyone was on the road. Since then, I have had more blood-boiling experiences with LA driving, but I still think that overall driving there is relatively non-harrowing for a major city.
Philly's not the worst either, though.

DC Beltway IMHO or even getting through BK and Queens and to the LIE

On the topic tough to compare; both have their bad aspects and my own personal annoyance is 76 but mainly because I have to use it a lot at rush hour
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Old 10-02-2011, 07:53 AM
 
Location: ITP - Northeast Atlanta
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Probably LA because of the seemingly endless traffic congestion alone.

Philly's it's own nightmare, but not in the same vein as LA IMO. I remember driving from KOP to southwest Philly during rush hour, and it was horrendous to say the least. Mostly two lanes (three at the most) the entire way, and traffic was bottlenecked as far as the eye could see!

My main issue with Philly's interstate system is the lack of loops in case you miss an exit and need to go back the other direction. Unlike here, you get off the next exit looking for a loop of sorts, and end up on a totally different voyage with little to no options to do so for several miles in some cases. I can't count how many times this has happened to me up there. The moral to the story is, don't miss your exit unless you've got time to burn. Locals are probably unaffected as they are familiar with workaround routes, but visitors be damned.
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:11 AM
 
Location: The City
18,492 posts, read 14,370,502 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATL_Aficionado View Post
Probably LA because of the seemingly endless traffic congestion alone.

Philly's it's own nightmare, but not in the same vein as LA IMO. I remember driving from KOP to southwest Philly during rush hour, and it was horrendous to say the least. Mostly two lanes (three at the most) the entire way, and traffic was bottlenecked as far as the eye could see!

My main issue with Philly's interstate system is the lack of loops in case you miss an exit and need to go back the other direction. Unlike here, you get off the next exit looking for a loop of sorts, and end up on a totally different voyage with little to no options to do so for several miles in some cases. I can't count how many times this has happened to me up there. The moral to the story is, don't miss your exit unless you've got time to burn. Locals are probably unaffected as they are familiar with workaround routes, but visitors be damned.

This is do to the old infrastructure and many roads have no place to exapnd. The exits are a pain. Major exits in some directions only allow for one way access or exits. I can see how this would be a real pain to someone who doesnt know the roads

I can only think of one true clover leaf interchange in the whole metro though there may be more and that is at the 95 and route 1 interchange in Bucks county. The highways in the Philly metro may be the worst of all large cities/metros from that standpoint. Even the Jersey side of Philly (And Jersey is typically far better) has the 295/42 thing that is total mess it forces both highways to merge then seperate and never links to the NJ turnpike. I think the engineers here were smoking something when they designed. Wouldnt it be cool if they were just forced to stay on the road or not get back on...

On the 76 path from KOP to Philly, I hate this I have to do this at rush proabably twice a week and is horrendous in a different way than say 85 in the ATL or most of the bad highways in LA, but all can be horrendous (with 76, you can bascially just be stuck, no exits)

Last edited by kidphilly; 10-02-2011 at 08:24 AM..
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Cerqueira César-São Paulo
24,493 posts, read 29,733,094 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rotodome View Post
In my experience, LA drivers are pretty mellow compared to most big city drivers. My first time driving in LA was rush hour on the 110, and I was surprised by how chill and non-aggressive everyone was on the road.
Yes, I totally agree.

Angelenos are not as easily provoked like drivers elsewhere I think because driving is such an entrenched part of their history and regional culture that they have gotten to a point where they a bit more mature about the whole driving thing.

Obviously not everyone, but I have commented on several occasions that I think Angelenos are the best drivers.

Everywhere else seems like newbies how immature and childish people are on the road. LOL.
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:53 AM
 
Location: ITP - Northeast Atlanta
1,362 posts, read 1,312,887 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kidphilly View Post
This is do to the old infrastructure and many roads have no place to exapnd. The exits are a pain. Major exits in some directions only allow for one way access or exits. I can see how this would be a real pain to someone who doesnt know the roads

I can only think of one true clover leaf interchange in the whole metro though there may be more and that is at the 95 and route 1 interchange in Bucks county. The highways in the Philly metro may be the worst of all large cities/metros from that standpoint. Even the Jersey side of Philly (And Jersey is typically far better) has the 295/42 thing that is total mess it forces both highways to merge then seperate and never links to the NJ turnpike. I think the engineers here were smoking something when they designed. Wouldnt it be cool if they were just forced to stay on the road or not get back on...

On the 76 path from KOP to Philly, I hate this I have to do this at rush proabably twice a week and is horrendous in a different way than say 85 in the ATL or most of the bad highways in LA, but all can be horrendous (with 76, you can bascially just be stuck, no exits)
Agree that it's a different brand of awful here, but still really bad.

Traffic bottlenecks during peak hours, but moves steadily. I dunno, perhaps additional lanes add a sense of psycological tranquility; a light at end of tunnel feel moreso than the former.

When I was last in LA, the traffic was backed for miles over miles on a Sunday. Haven't experienced as much of this in and around Philly outside of peak hours. Commuters don't seem to rely on interstates quite as much there either.
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