09/06/2011 12:38 pm ET Updated Nov 06, 2011

California Commute Time: Extreme Commutes On The Rise In Southern California

Story comes courtesy of California Watch.

By Agustin Armendariz

Of the 15 million Californians who commute to work, 2.7 million spend at least 45 minutes getting to their jobs, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

The latest estimates come from the 2005-09 American Community Survey, which has half of commuters clustered in the 5- to-24-minute range.

On the high end, more than 470,000 commuters spend 90 minutes or more getting to work, with the biggest concentrations being in Los Angeles and Riverside counties.

The commute time "includes time spent waiting for public transportation, picking up passengers in carpools, and time spent in other activities related to getting to work," according to the Census Bureau.

A recent Wall Street Journal article found that extreme commutes are on the rise in parts of Southern California:

"It used to be when you looked at Census data and saw that someone lived in Los Angeles and worked in San Francisco, you assumed it was a mistake," Alan Pisarski, author of (the study) Commuting in America, told the Wall Street Journal. "These days, you cannot be sure."


Agustin Armendariz is an investigative reporter for California Watch, a project of the non-profit Center for Investigative reporting. Find more California Watch stories here.