Steve Rogers

About Steve Rogers

Assistant News Director/Assignment Editor; degree in finance and administration from Yale University; 35 years experience in journalism.

Corinth Has Among Most Lone Drivers, Others Not Far Behind

By G. Scott Thomas/The Biz Journals

The people of Corinth, Miss., are loners — at least when they travel to and from their jobs.The Corinth micropolitan area, located in Mississippi’s northeastern corner, has a workforce of roughly 14,000 persons. Eighty-nine percent drive alone to work, the steepest percentage in the nation. No carpooling or public transit for them.

Three micros are close behind with solo-commuting rates between 88 and 89 percent: Summerville, Ga., Dyersburg, Tenn., and Defiance, Ohio.

Three-quarters of all American workers drive by themselves to their places of employment. Here’s the national breakdown from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2010 American Community Survey:

  • Drive alone in car, truck or van, 76.0 percent
  • Carpool, 10.4 percent
  • Public transit, 4.9 percent
  • Work at home, 4.1 percent
  • Walk, 2.8 percent
  • Other means (taxi, motorcycle, bicycle, boat, etc.), 1.7 percent

This figures merely confirm a trend that has been evident ever since the Census Bureau began tabulating statistics on commuting in 1960. “The private automobile’s dominance among travel modes used for the commute represents a long-standing pattern,” concluded a bureau report in 2009.

The following database contains statistics for all 942 metropolitan and micropolitan areas. Use the tab to isolate a single state, or simply hit the Search button to see the top-to-bottom national standings. You can re-sort the list by clicking any column header.

The major market with the strongest concentration of solo commuters is — fittingly enough — the nation’s auto capital, Detroit. Here are the top 10 major markets:

  1. Detroit, 84.62%
  2. Birmingham, 83.58%
  3. Indianapolis, 83.44%
  4. Kansas City, 83.04%
  5. Columbus, 82.58%
  6. Memphis, 82.56%
  7. Louisville, 82.48%
  8. St. Louis, 82.33%
  9. Cincinnati, 82.31%
  10. Oklahoma City, 82.20%

At least half of the workers in every metro and micro drive alone to work. The nation’s lowest proportion is 50.4 percent in the New York City area.


SOLO COMMUTERS IN METRO AND MICRO AREAS (2010)

Metro or micro Workers (2010) Drove alone in car, truck or van Percent RankAscending
Corinth, MS 14,029 12,518 89.23% 1
Tupelo, MS 57,942 50,241 86.71% 12
Brookhaven, MS 13,303 11,392 85.64% 41
Laurel, MS 33,436 28,597 85.53% 45
Vicksburg, MS 21,194 17,974 84.81% 71
Jackson, MS 238,219 200,893 84.33% 97
Natchez, MS-LA 18,655 15,731 84.33% 98
Columbus, MS 24,529 20,609 84.02% 117
Pascagoula, MS 66,909 55,998 83.69% 144
Hattiesburg, MS 61,539 51,497 83.68% 145
West Point, MS 7,625 6,333 83.06% 195
Grenada, MS 8,646 7,069 81.76% 315
Meridian, MS 41,983 34,016 81.02% 383
Cleveland, MS 12,674 10,266 81.00% 386
Oxford, MS 20,177 16,337 80.97% 391
Yazoo City, MS 9,097 7,343 80.72% 413
Gulfport-Biloxi, MS 107,131 85,899 80.18% 470
McComb, MS 18,904 15,121 79.99% 490
Starkville, MS 19,762 15,698 79.44% 541
Picayune, MS 21,821 17,298 79.27% 550
Greenville, MS 17,743 13,914 78.42% 619
Greenwood, MS 14,080 10,970 77.91% 663
Indianola, MS 8,429 6,494 77.04% 702
Clarksdale, MS 8,803 6,368 72.34% 865
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