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Byline: Keith Epstein
Mar. 15--WASHINGTON--Next time you're stuck at Malfunction Junction in Tampa, wondering why Florida is called the Sunshine State instead of the Gridlock State, consider this: The Bay area has better roads than most metropolitan areas in the nation.
Major arteries in Florida's largest cities -- Tampa-St. Petersburg, Jacksonville, Orlando, West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, and Miami -- are generally smoother and in superior condition to those in 43 other metro areas, according to Federal Highway Administration data analyzed by a nonprofit research group.
Two-thirds of Tampa-St. Petersburg's major roads are in "good" shape, and less than one- fifth of them are cracked, uneven, or in drastic need of repair, according to the …