Reason Foundation Highway Report

Today Reason Foundation released its 18th Annual Report on the Performance of the State Highway System. This report ranks the quality and spending on the state highways based on data reported by each state for 2007 and parts of 2008. Our legislators should be hanging their heads in shame while the taxpayers should be sharpening their pitchforks.

The condition of New Jersey highways rank at the bottom while spending per mile far outpaces the rest of the nation. New Jersey spends 8.5 times more than the national average per mile. This is 1.7 times more than Massachusetts, the next lowest spender.

For the years 2003 through 2007, New Jersey spent 14.2 times more than the national average per mile.

In good news we improved our overall ranking from the last report and our highways are safer than the average.

Category NJ National NJ Ranking
Urban Interstates in Poor Condition 17.73% 5.86% 48
Rural Arterials in Poor Conditions 0.79% 0.64% 34
Percent of Urban Interstates Congested 72.21% 50.59% 47
Deficient Bridges 34.91% 25.29% 43
Fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles
0.95 1.36 6
Total Disbursements per mile $1,155,149 $134,535 50

For 2007, New Jersey’s 3,333-mile system is rated 47th, up four spots from 50th in 2006. Its rating is based on a 43rd rating in system performance and a 50th place rating on financial performance. New Jersey’s best rankings are for rural narrow lanes (1st tie) with no rural arterials reported as narrow and fatality rate (6th). However, New Jersey ranks 50th in three categories (capital and bridge disbursements per state-controlled mile, maintenance disbursements per state-controlled mile and total disbursements per state-controlled mile) and 48th in administrative disbursements per state-controlled mile. It ranks 48th in urban interstate condition, 46th in rural interstate condition, 43rd in bridge deficiencies and 48th in urban interstate congestion.
- page 47, Annual Report on Highway Performance