San Francisco workers have the most expensive commute in the country, new study says

 It’s no secret many workers have abandoned downtown San Francisco. And while the city’s impending doom has been prematurely declared, a recent study may help explain why San Francisco workers are reluctant to come into the office. 

San Francisco workers have the most expensive commute in the country, according to recent findings from the Chamber of Commerce (a digital resource for small businesses, not to be confused with the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce). The study found San Francisco commuters spend $12,650.66 annually on their commutes — just under $50 per day. The national average was $5,748.05, less than half of what San Francisco commuters are paying on average.

San Francisco’s high cost comes from both the long commute times — the study found San Francisco workers spend 58.4 minutes getting to and from work — and the region’s high cost of living. Researchers compared the cost of living with the amount of time spent commuting in an effort to gauge how much time and money was lost as workers made their way to and from the office. 

Fremont, another Bay Area city, came in second among the 170 cities studied, with an average yearly commute cost of $12,048.32. Sunnyvale, Oakland, Hayward, and San Jose all ranked in the top 25.

Lawmakers have been trying to improve public transportation in an effort to alleviate the Bay Area’s expensive commute, but they’ve had mixed results. Earlier this month, San Francisco state Sen. Scott Wiener announced he was rescinding a proposal intended to help fund public transportation. The bill would have increased the bridge tolls in the region, creating an estimated $180 million to go toward supporting Bay Area transit agencies. 

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