State Government

Vermont highway, bridge condition in lower half of U.S. states

by Guy Page

Vermont ranks 30th overall among U.S. states in condition of its highways and bridges, and among the worst in state spending and condition of rural highways, claims a recent report. 

However, Vermont ranks among the nation’s leaders in urban Interstate highway condition and low urban traffic fatality rates.

According to the 25th Annual Highway Report by the Reason Foundation, using 2018 statistics, Vermont ranks:

#1 in urban Interstate Highway pavement condition

#3 in [low] urban fatality rate

#5 in [fewest] structurally deficient bridges and Interstate pavement condition

#44 in rural arterial highway condition

#45 in administration spending per mile

Overall, the report finds the general quality and safety of the nation’s highways has incrementally improved as spending on state-owned roads increased by 9 percent, up to $151.8 billion, since the previous report.  Of the Annual Highway Report’s nine categories focused on performance, including structurally deficient bridges and traffic congestion, the country made incremental progress in seven of them.

However, the pavement condition of the nation’s urban Interstate system worsened slightly. Over a quarter of the urban Interstate mileage in poor condition is in just three states: California, New York, and, perhaps surprisingly, Wyoming.

The study also finds drivers in 11 states spent more than 50 hours per year in traffic congestion, with commuters in the three most-congested states—Delaware, Illinois, and Massachusetts—spending over 100 hours per year in traffic congestion in 2019.

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