Pandemic has changed Houston's commuting habits, according to new study

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- When the pandemic struck, Houston hit the brakes, with much of the city staying at home. Now that we have adapted to a "new normal" a year later, some transportation trends seem to be sticking around.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, weekly average driving is down 9% in Houston, according to a study from Bumper Data Analysis.

Texas is among the states that saw the largest weekly decrease in driving post-lockdown with a 3% drop. That tied with New York. Hawaii, California, Florida and Arizona were the only states with greater decreases in traffic. Analysts attribute much of that to a decline in tourism in those states as well.

SEE ALSO: Google tracking Texas traffic patterns during pandemic

Houston's public transportation use is down 44%.

Walking as a mode of transportation has grown. It's up 5%. That may not seem like a big jump, but Houston ranks second in the nation for large cities on how much walking has increased, according to Bumper. Only Dallas saw a bigger increase in walking - up 8%.

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ABC13's Katherine Whaley collected data from Transtar showing comparing traffic before and during the pandemic and here's what she found.



The city of Houston's Vision Zero Project is working to help improve pedestrian safety, especially around intersections. If you are walking on a street without a sidewalk, walk on the left side of the street, so you can see oncoming traffic.

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With Houston streets and freeways nearly empty during the shutdown, some drivers turned the open roadways into raceways.

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