Texas A&M Transportation Institute senior research scientist David Schrank said more commute time is being lost in congestion than ever before.
"For traffic delay, Houston actually is a top 10 metro area coming in at number nine, for 75 hours of delay per year, lost per commuter," said Schrank.
He said in the past, Houston had more of a radial system where roads fed into downtown. Now, commuters are going from suburb to suburb leading to the development of Beltway 8 and 99.
"If you start trying to drive suburb to suburb, that can become a more difficult trip because the large freeways weren't there 20 years ago to go from one side of town to the other," said Schrank.
He said large metropolitan areas have a complex transportation system. Millions of people are trying to get around the city around the same time in the morning and afternoon causes a lot of congestion.
He added the solution would include better operation of roads and public transportation.
The longer commute time was found to be associated with less productivity at work and more dissatisfaction at home.