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4 Tips for Dealing With LA Traffic | NMS Overland

4 Tips for Dealing With LA Traffic

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There are a lot of great things about LA; the beaches, the high-end shopping, the celebrity sightings, the awesome brunch spots, and the unbeatable weather. But, as with most great cities, there is one unpleasant and unavoidable truth: traffic. 

Surprisingly, LA comes in at number six on the US News’ list of cities with the worst traffic (falling behind Boston, Philadelphia, New York, and Chicago.) While LA traffic isn't completely unavoidable, there are a few ways you can be proactive and make it a little more manageable.  

Avoid Peak Hours 

If it is possible, avoid the gridlock hours. This is the time that most people start heading into their nine-to-five job, which is the window between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. With more and more jobs offering flexible start times and remote opportunities, it might be possible to rearrange your work day so that you're not driving to work when everybody else in LA is.  

The same goes for heading home, but the busy window is much longer and harder to avoid. The traffic is pretty consistent from 4:30 p.m. to 8 pm. Again, if it's possible to leave the office earlier or later to avoid this window, you give yourself a better chance of avoiding the traffic.  

Look Into Public Transportation 

Many people in LA who don't want to deal with the infamous LA traffic choose to take public transportation to work, school, and around town. Because there are so many people that need to move throughout the city, LA has one of the best public transportation systems in the country. It is safe, reliable, and a great alternative to sitting in traffic. When you take advantage of public transportation, you don't have to worry about finding a parking spot or getting a ticket for parking in the wrong one. It's very possible to get around LA without a car at all.  

This very pedestrian-friendly city makes it easy to get to and from all the major hotspots without a car. And if you don't have to pay for car insurance, gas, and other car-related expenses, you can end up saving a lot of money.  

  • A one-day pass on the Metro is $3.50 

  • A weekly pass is $12.50  

  • A monthly pass is $50.  

  • Students, those who qualify for low-income housing, and seniors can all qualify for a discount. 

(Good news: For locals living in luxury apartments like NMS Overland, there's a public transportation station less than a minute from the apartment community.) 

Know The Lingo 

If you're new to LA, understanding the road system can get a little confusing, Especially because not everyone refers to the same roads by the same name. For example, if you ask a local for directions they may tell you to “take the 405 to the 10” but that doesn't help you if you don't know that the 405 is also called the San Diego Freeway and the 10 is the Santa Monica Freeway. Before you start planning your route to work, school, or other local hot spots, familiarize yourself with some of LA's most popular roads: 

  • The Four Level Interchange is also called the Bill Keene Memorial Interchange) and is the intersection of the 110 and 101 Freeways in Downtown L.A. 

  • The “East L.A. Interchange" is the junction of the 5, 10, 101, and 60 freeways just southeast of Downtown L.A. 

  • Interstate 405 is also called the San Diego freeway. It's the main freeway that runs north to south on the westside of LA. It follows the outline of the Pacific coast for much of its route. It's one of the busiest highways in the country and the one most people use to get to LAX. It's also a good option when you want to avoid Interstate 5 

  • Interstate 10 is also called the Santa Monica freeway or the San Bernardino freeway. It's the main Highway that runs east to west connecting downtown LA to Santa Monica. I 10 travels east through Phoenix New Orleans and ends in Jacksonville, Florida. 

  • Interstate 105 is also called The Glenn Anderson freeway. Locals also refer to it as the century freeway. It runs Easton West and parallels I-10. This is another popular way to get to LAX  

  • U.S. Route 101 is often called the Hollywood freeway or the Ventura freeway. It's the longest highway in the state and is the major route for the north to south travel. It links LA to the Central Coast, the Bay Area, and the North Coast. 

Learn The Shortcuts 

According to an article in US News, these are some of the best ways to shave a few minutes off of your commute time and avoid the busiest rows of the busiest times: 

  • -Olympic & Pico are decent substitutes for the 10 if it's really jammed. 

  • -Take Malibu Canyon or Las Virgenes to Pacific Coast Highway to avoid the 101 & 405 freeways. 

  • If you're trying to get to Hollywood or the 101 from West Hollywood, consider taking Fountain Ave. 

  • Calneva, Woodcliff, and Roscomare are good shortcuts off Mulholland to and from the Valley and the City. 

  • Sepulveda and Centinela are good alternate street routes to LAX for the times when the 405 is a parking lot. 

  • If Sepulveda is congested too, consider Pershing Drive, and Highland Ave. instead. 

  • Don't forget about Aviation Boulevard either; it runs parallel to Sepulveda, you can catch it from the 405 and 105, and it has a quarter of the traffic at rush hour. 

  • Going downtown from Santa Monica, the Eastbound 10 is always a mess for the evening commute. On a good day, speeds are hovering between 30 and 35 mph, but on particularly bad days Venice Blvd. is a good alternative. 

  • Pacific Coast Highway is better than the 405, although there is slow traffic, especially between The McClure tunnel and Chautauqua going North through Malibu. 

Bottom Line  

There are so many great things about living in LA, and most locals agree that the traffic is just part of the lifestyle. And while not completely avoidable, it can be managed with a little bit of patience and time management.  

If you are looking for an apartment to rent in West LA, schedule a tour of NMS Overland today. This boutique building with high-end apartments, furnished co-living suites, and unfurnished one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments will change the way you think about apartment living in LA. And maybe make the LA traffic a little more bearable.  

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