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Study: North Dakota, South Carolina Have Best Roads, New Jersey Has the Worst

A study released on June 28 shows that drivers in California, Minnesota, New Jersey and North Carolina face the worst traffic in the U.S., while...
July 10, 2007

A study released on June 28 shows that drivers in California, Minnesota, New Jersey and North Carolina face the worst traffic in the U.S., while North Dakota and South Carolina received the highest overall ratings for cost-effective road systems. New Jersey's gridlocked highways, poor pavement conditions and high repair costs put the state last in overall cost-effectiveness for the eighth consecutive year. Montana's roads were the most deadly. Drivers in California, Minnesota, New Jersey and North Carolina are stuck in the worst traffic, with over 70 percent of urban Interstates in those states qualifying as congested. The study, conducted by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and financed by the Reason Foundation in Los Angeles, was based on data from 1984 through 2005. 

The study found that although road conditions have improved in recent years, traffic congestion and highway fatalities have increased slightly.  State governments are being forced to cover a greater portion of the cost of building and maintaining roads now that the federal highway agency lacks funds for major highway projects.  Dr. David Hartgen, the study's lead author, said that states need to spend more of their transportation money on projects designed to reduce congestion.  The study ranked highway systems according to their cost effectiveness and found that North Dakota, South Carolina, Kansas, New Mexico and Montana made the best use of transportation funds to reduce traffic fatalities and congestion and improve general road conditions.  The states that ranked lowest were New Jersey, Alaska, New York, Rhode Island and Hawaii.

Road Conditions Improve But Traffic Congestion Rises (Reason Foundation)

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