Missoula Makes List of World’s Most Terribly Designed Cities
All Missoulians have experienced Malfunction Junction during rush hour. It truly lives up to it's name as Missoula's terrible city layout culminates at one 5 lane intersection. Missoula has made the list as one of the most poorly designed cities in the world. Yeah! THE WORLD! Move over Dubai and Sao Paulo, we are Missoula. Growing up in Billings, I became accustomed to the grid pattern of the city layout. Billings is a simple North/South/East/West design. Making it hard to get lost, even in residential areas. I used to joke, while looking of a map of Missoula, that it resembled what it would look like if a child took a bunch of spaghetti noodles and traced them on a piece of paper. It all comes down to the rivers and two city planners.
According to Thrillist
On its surface, Missoula looks like just another Montana city, albeit its second-most populous one. That's until you notice its weird "Slant Streets" neighborhood, so named because it's the only section of town that doesn't follow a grid pattern, with streets running diagonally toward the Clark Fork River instead. This offbeat part of town actually dates back to the 1890s, when the area below the river was first being developed. Two lawyers wanted to break away and establish a new town imaginatively called South Missoula, and began laying out a street plan that ran parallel to Bitterroot Wagon Road; unfortunately, the town's moneyed interests said "no dice," and surrounded their street plan with a grid that completely threw everything out of whack. Thus, Slant Streets was born.
To top it all off, the trend of adding "roundabouts" to Missoula streets has almost gotten me as confused as the Griswolds in London.