• ETC
  • Aug 3, 2013
Traffic, as we've established, is one of the worst things about driving. Too many motorists on too few roads is enough to ruin one's day, not to mention the impact vehicle congestion has on the environment. Now, though, an app called I'm Stuck can share the misery that comes with being lodged on the 405 for three hours for no apparent reason with the people that have the power to make road improvements: politicians.

Yes, I'm Stuck, as Wired describes it, is "like tweeting a company CEO when a product fails." I'm Stuck sends a message directly to your local Representative or Senator about where you're stuck and why. It includes everything from your average traffic jam to a subway delay to an overcrowded train.

Funded by Building America's Future, an infrastructure advocacy group that counts former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell, New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as its co-chairs, I'm Stuck is meant to help shed light on the amount of productivity that is lost by transportation delays. It's also designed to help Americans realize that politicians can have an effect on the amount of misery that comes with their commute.

Head on over to the I'm Stuck app's website to have a closer look. The app is available, free of charge, in both the Apple App Store and the Android Marketplace.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 58 Comments
      Spec
      • 1 Year Ago
      You are not stuck in traffic, YOU ARE TRAFFIC.
      Michael S
      • 1 Year Ago
      There are two ways to reduce highway congestion: increase capacity or reduce travel demand. Yet if a politician were to address either of those issues, the same people complaining about congestion would be complaining about the solution. Adding lanes in an urban setting is cost prohibitive, at $500 million per mile per lane. There will be backlash against raising general tax revenues or user fees to pay for construction. But even if capacity is somehow increased, peak-hour congestion on a major highway will only be reduced momentarily. Once off-peak drivers (e.g., those who leave at 5:30 am in the morning to avoid traffic) realize the increase in capacity, they will shift their driving closer to more convenient peak hours and peak-hour congestion will return. As for reducing demand, most major metros have already tried all the low-hanging fruit, like vanpools, employer-based travel demand management, etc. The fact remains that if something is free, where the marginal cost is zero, then people will overuse that good or service to a point where it's crappy and no longer efficient. Pricing is the only market-based tool that can manage demand, yet people who currently complain would rather sit in traffic than to accept congestion pricing. I suppose a lottery might also work, or rationing, such as in Beijing where you can't drive for one day of the week depending on your plate number, but those approaches are neither as efficient nor equitable as pricing. Basic economics tells you that if supply is too low, demand is too high, and price can't be increased, then you end up with massive inefficiency. And honestly, those sitting in peak-hour traffic (tweeting to their politicians, no less!) are part of the problem. Their decision to drive at the most congested hours is the reason why there's congestion in the first place.
      tmstreet
      • 1 Year Ago
      What we need are less cars, not more and wide freeways.
      SloopJohnB
      • 1 Year Ago
      i'm stuck on autoblog....
      Suzq044
      • 1 Year Ago
      Hai Encinitas.. we miss you! (lol) That traffic looks like it's from the DelMar fair or something.. unusually heavy.
        Pinhead
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Suzq044
        4.25 miles to my house. Looks about typical for rush hour here to me :-(
          Suzq044
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pinhead
          We used to live in Carlsbad; up off poinsettia. lol
          Suzq044
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pinhead
          I guess i never actually hit there during rush hour more than once, then. lol
      Durishin
      • 1 Year Ago
      I did EXACTLY that commute in the picture. Then, I bought a bike and rode 12 miles down the beach every day and 12 miles back. The scenery was far better between the beach and the women riding in to work and my health and mood improved greatly. Changed my life! You should try it!
      ocbrad1
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ahhh, 5 South through Encinitas and Solana Beach. A stretch of road that is almost always running below the speed limits. It was nice and relaxing commuting on Amtrak from Solana to Santa Ana. Ride home, running along the coast, sipping a Stone Arrogant Bastard, definitely the most enjoyable commute I've had.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      IBx27
      • 1 Year Ago
      Sure, lets tell the government they need a few more trillion dollars to build elevated alternate highways around every smelly overpopulated people center.
      raktmn
      • 1 Year Ago
      Does the app specify how much extra in taxes you are willing to pay out of your own pocket to pay to fix gridlock? Without saying how much users want to pay to fund gridlock reduction, anyone using this app is just a whiner.
      waetherman
      • 1 Year Ago
      This app is pointless bordering on irresponsible. Seriously, like our elected officials need to be harassed every time someone is running late because they forgot to check the traffic report? Elected officials have a lot more important things to do than deal with a flood of messages about traffic jams. Granted, those elected officials are probably not doing those more important things, but even so, they have more important things to not be doing than not doing something about traffic jams.
        mbukukanyau
        • 1 Year Ago
        @waetherman
        What is more important than enabling people they represent spend their time productively? Freeways should always be a priority. No one should be wasting time on them. They foist need to increase the speed limit to 130 MPH, ensure there is enough cops to keep slow drivers off the fast lanes and things like that.
          ElectricAvenue
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mbukukanyau
          I agree with the "no one should be wasting time on them" sentiment, but the rest is a bit bizarre... Freeways cost billions and billions of dollars - they should always be a priority? Really?
        clquake
        • 1 Year Ago
        @waetherman
        Are they too busy with something else? Whatever they're doing, it's not running the country.
      Polly Prissy Pants
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yeah, great idea, I'm sure the politicians have no idea traffic exists. The problem isn't a lack of will, it's the same old cliché where the average dumb voter wants the sky and the moon but screams bloody murder any time someone asks them to pay more in taxes to get it. Here's a good idea for an app. Every time you're stuck in traffic, you can have it contribute a dollar towards the county roads fund. Nah, actually it's more fun to just complain.
        mylexicon
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Polly Prissy Pants
        It has nothing to do with paying more taxes. Fifty years ago, we spent the federal budget on the middle class and productivity. 10% of our GDP was military spending, which provided jobs, healthcare, education, worker training, and pensions to middle class citizens. We were spending on the new interstate programs and national highway programs, which improved labor mobility and jobs. We were spending on new ag programs. It was the most robust middle class and the best distribution of wealth in post-industrial US history. In the late-60s and early-70s, we decided to spend more on the poor and elderly, a noble goal, but spending spiraled out of control. We now spend about $1T on Social-Security/Medicare and $1T on Welfare/Medicaid/Unemployment. The middle class have gotten nothing but higher taxes, mainly FICA taxes. Military is 4.5% of GDP, thus, it provides fewer educations, fewer worker training programs, and fewer healthcare plans to non-students. Education is now paid for with debt, which makes young middle class poorer. Road infrastructure is old and maintenance (jobs) are under-funded, which reduces middle class productivity. To boot, the American middle class faces far more global labor competition than fifty years ago. Federal tax revenues have increased nearly 600% since 1980. If you think Americans need to pay more, you are seriously mistaken. The government is not taking care of the people who take care of the government. Some people say Taxed Enough Already and demand a refund. Other populist Dems and Repubs, who have no political representation, want to reform spending, and reallocate inefficient entitlements for poor and elderly (corporate welfare, political welfare) to the middle class for healthcare, military, education, etc.
        Richard
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Polly Prissy Pants
        Well, when you're already paying 40% off the top maybe you'll understand. .
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