A new list of metro Atlanta's 10 most terrible traffic hotspots

The Atlanta skyline loomed overhead as northbound traffic crawls along the connecter past Arthur B. Langford Parkway. Southside commuters riding into Atlanta experienced unusual long delays on Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016 starting with a crash at 5:59 a.m. that took up 3-center northbound lanes that caused heavy delays on I-75 at I-285 in Clayton County. The crash kept cars at a crawl from Jonesboro Rd./Hwy 54 according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center. Following that crash just before 7 a.m. a rollover crash on the I-75 / I-85 connector between Fair Drive and University Avenue further exacerbated traffic flow. Officials offered no additional details concerning the crashes. JOHN SPINK /JSPINK@AJC.COM
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The Atlanta skyline loomed overhead as northbound traffic crawls along the connecter past Arthur B. Langford Parkway. Southside commuters riding into Atlanta experienced unusual long delays on Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016 starting with a crash at 5:59 a.m. that took up 3-center northbound lanes that caused heavy delays on I-75 at I-285 in Clayton County. The crash kept cars at a crawl from Jonesboro Rd./Hwy 54 according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center. Following that crash just before 7 a.m. a rollover crash on the I-75 / I-85 connector between Fair Drive and University Avenue further exacerbated traffic flow. Officials offered no additional details concerning the crashes. JOHN SPINK /JSPINK@AJC.COM

Traffic. It's as Atlanta as Coca-Cola, Outkast and baseball teams fleeing to the suburbs combined, and it routinely ruins your life — or your commute, at least.

And while all ATLiens are keenly aware of traffic's existence, it's safe to bet they are also curious about where the logjams happen most often — and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via data from the Atlanta Regional Commission) is here to please.

And depress, because we've got a ranking of metro Atlanta's 10 most consistently terrible traffic hotspots in the month of September.

To compile this data, the ARC charted the average duration, average length and frequency of bottlenecks — defined in a pretty graphic below — at key metro Atlanta locations. It then multiplied all those numbers together to come up with an "impact factor." Which is really just a misery factor, if we're being honest.

It's important to note that "duration" refers to how long a bottleneck was classified a bottleneck, not how long it took drivers to pass through — but don't worry.

There's plenty of pain to go around.

10. I-285 east at I-85/Exit 33: Leaving the Perimeter at Spaghetti Junction, guys? Really? You know better than this.

Average duration: 2 hours, 53 minutes

Average length: 5 miles

Occurrences: 71

9. I-85 south at I-285/Exit 95: And getting on to the Perimeter at Spaghetti Junction? Even more of a noob maneuver, noob.

Average duration: 2 hours, 27 minutes

Average length: 6.6 miles

Occurrences: 67

Caption
Automobiles travel through Spaghetti Junction, with some stacking up on the I-285 East ramp on a typical day. DeKalb County and metro Atlanta as a whole are projected to continue growing over the next 25 years. JASON GETZ / JGETZ@AJC.COM

Automobiles travel through Spaghetti Junction, with some stacking up on the I-285 East ramp on a typical day. DeKalb County and metro Atlanta as a whole are projected to continue growing over the next 25 years. JASON GETZ / JGETZ@AJC.COM
Caption
Automobiles travel through Spaghetti Junction, with some stacking up on the I-285 East ramp on a typical day. DeKalb County and metro Atlanta as a whole are projected to continue growing over the next 25 years. JASON GETZ / JGETZ@AJC.COM

8. I-85/I-75 north at Exit 251: The Connector? The Connector? Hahahaha.

Average duration: 3 hours, 52 minutes

Average length: 4.2 miles

Occurrences: 70

7. I-85 south at I-75/I-85, Exit 85: See above, genius.

Average duration: 2 hours, 38 minutes

Average length: 3.6 miles

Occurrences: 130

6. I-75 south at Windy Hill Road/Exit 260: Cobb County stand up! Er, actually, sit down. In your car. For a long time. Because traffic.

Average duration: 2 hours, 4 minutes

Average length: 5.9 miles

Occurrences: 108

Caption
A bottleneck, as defined by the Atlanta Regional Commission.

A bottleneck, as defined by the Atlanta Regional Commission.
Caption
A bottleneck, as defined by the Atlanta Regional Commission.

5. I-285 south at I-20: With apologies to Tupac Shakur: The westside is decidedly not the best side.

Average duration: 2 hours, 44 minutes

Average length: 6.2 miles

Occurrences: 89

4. I-285 north at Chamblee-Tucker Road: Gross, gross, gross, gross, gross. Gross.

Average duration: 1 hour, 49 minutes

Average length: 8.1 miles

Occurrences: 108

Caption
Peachtree Industrial Boulevard stretches into mud at I-285 way back in 1970. FILE PHOTO

Peachtree Industrial Boulevard stretches into mud at I-285 way back in 1970. FILE PHOTO
Caption
Peachtree Industrial Boulevard stretches into mud at I-285 way back in 1970. FILE PHOTO

3. I-285 west at I-75/Exit 20: Good thing they're not, like, building a baseball stadium here or anything.

Average duration: 2 hours, 42 minutes

Average length: 5.7 miles

Occurrences: 109

2. I-75 north at Chastain Road/Exit 271: Nah, playa. Just nah.

Average duration: 2 hours, 18 minutes

Average length: 9.1 miles

Occurrences: 84

1. I-85/I-75 south at I-20/Exit 247: WHAT DID I TELL YOU ABOUT THE GOD FORSAKEN CONNECTOR? What did I tell you? Five hours and 10 minutes? You see that?! What's wrong with you people? Have you no pride? Have you no shame??

Average duration: 5 hours, 10 minutes

Average length: 3.6 miles

Occurrences: 119

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