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twelveoaks Sep 13th, 2009 03:30 PM

How can i avoid the traffic around Boston ?
My wife and I are flying into Providence and will drive from there to Portland, Maine . We will leave the Providence airport at 7:30 am on a Wednesday and head north. We should be in the Boston area at around 8:30 and I am afraid we will be in serious commuter traffic if we stay on I-95. Can anyone recommend an alternative route that would miss this traffic. I am only assuming there will be traffic. Right or wrong ??

travelbuff Sep 13th, 2009 06:09 PM

Id suggest staying around Providence and getting some breakfast then heading out that way you will miss most of the traffic. You might want to connect to Rt 128 which goes around Boston and then connect to 95 heading north.

Have a great trip.

Ackislander Sep 14th, 2009 04:16 AM

It will take you roughly an hour to get to Boston. If you follow travelbuff's excellent advice, you won't get there until 9-9:30, and you should be fine at that time.

1030 AM radio has traffic reports "on the threes" (2, 13, 23, etc) that are very reliable and will help you decide whether to take 128/95 or 93-US 1-95. You will be able to hear it as you leave Providence.

Anonymous Sep 14th, 2009 05:18 AM

I live in the area, travel to Providence frequently, and do not understand the above 2 suggestions. Route 128 IS Route 95. Where Route 95, coming north from Providence, joins Route 93, if you took 93 you'd either be heading south towards Cape Cod or north into Boston, which would certainly have more traffic than staying on 128, unless there's a major accident.

As I understand the original post, you're considering taking 95 all the way and wondering if there's a better way. Yes, traffic will be bad, probably until at least 9:30 or 10 AM.

You'll encounter less traffic, but add about 20 miles, by taking Route 495, which is the outer loop that "parallels" Route 95/128 as the ring road around Boston. There is currently road reconstruction at a couple of points along 95/128 that would make the extra effort of taking 495 worthwhile, IMHO. Unfortunately, the WBZ traffic reports usually don't discuss Route 495, which I suppose is a good sign.

wyatt92 Sep 14th, 2009 06:24 AM

I was going to suggest taking 495 as well, as there's definitely less traffic than 495/128. But I think the best plan may be to just have breakfast first so you can take 95.

It's confusing, but as Anonymous said, 128 is 95, so you don't have to "connect" to anything, you can just follow it the entire way.

djkbooks Sep 14th, 2009 09:21 AM

Mileage via I-95/I-93 is 157, via I-95 (128) is 163, via I-495 is 174.

There is much less traffic on I-495 weekday mornings, and you'd save a lot of time versus the other two routes, even though it's a few miles farther.

amyb Sep 14th, 2009 09:43 AM

Personally, I'd just wait and leave Providence about 9:00 and go straight up 95. By the time you hit the worst of the morning rush areas, it'll have cleared up for the most part.

Cranachin Sep 14th, 2009 02:23 PM

I agree with the "eat breakfast and leave Providence at 9" advice.

And FWIW - Ackislander is right that WBZ (1030 AM) has very good traffic reports. Unfortunately, they might mean little to you, as they don't use exit numbers and the street names are probably totally unfamiliar to you. For example, if you hear that there is an accident on I-95 northbound at Great Plain Ave, will that mean anything to you (especially if you do not have a street map of metro Boston with you)?

Even worse, traffic reporters here (on all stations) often use landmarks rather than streets, so you'll hear that traffic is backed up to the "gas tank" or the "supermarket overpass" or the "Hood plant". Not very helpful to non-locals (or even locals who are not from that particular part of the metro area).

Grandmommy Sep 14th, 2009 03:16 PM

I've dropped off relatives for early morning flights in Providence and then headed home to Maine via 495. Those extra few miles are more than worth it to me for the much lighter traffic.

gail Sep 14th, 2009 07:09 PM

Rte 495 is the only way to go. Now, a compromise for when. How about leave Providence at the appointed 7:30 hour and if you hit horrible traffic, stop and have breakfast - there are all sorts of places along Rte 495 you could stop.

You will hit pockets of traffic even along Rte 495, but unless some yahoo tips over a big truck they will only last an exit or 2 or be around majuor interchanges. Stick with it and you will be fine.

*55 on cell phone will give traffic reports that are a tiny bit more comprehensible to non-locals. If you have a GPS to bring it could re-route you past any truck-tipping yahoos if necessary.

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