Traffic ebbs and flows like pulsing veins. This video of the downtown Sacramento street grid and adjacent freeways depicts traffic flows Tuesday evening over the course of three hours from the prime 5 p.m. commute hour to the 8 p.m. beginning of the Paul McCartney concert at the Golden 1 Center.
Green lines represent free-flow traffic. Dark red is traffic that has stopped. The graphic, based on Google’s traffic tracking system, shows that downtown streets and freeways became congested during the post-work commute as workers left downtown, some of them early to avoid the arena traffic.
Traffic then eased around 6 p.m., as the red lines turned to yellows and sometimes greens. As the concert hour drew near, spot congestion popped up on streets around the downtown arena, although nearby Interstate 5 appears to have been only minimally affected by arriving arena traffic. Instead, it appears arena goers entered downtown incrementally over several hours, spreading out across the urban street grid.