Anyone who’s taken a great American road trip knows that while this country does many things well, taking care of its roads and bridges doesn’t seem to be a top priority.
Even though Congress finally passed a $305 billion, five-year highway and transit bill at the end of last year, overall government spending on infrastructure is at a 30-year low, and nowhere near the level needed to make much-needed repairs.
The backlog in spending on necessary interstate highways repairs and improvements includes $59 billion for paving, $30 billion for bridges and $100 billion for system expansion and enhancement, according to a recent report by TRIP, a national transportation research group.
The report contains a wealth of data on the status of the roads and bridges in each state. We used that data to rank the states based on the condition of the pavement of their interstates, the soundness of their bridges, their fatality rates and their highway congestion.
We found that while conditions are generally poor throughout the country, they’re far worse in some states than others. Washington, D.C., had the very worst roads, according to our analysis, but that could be because it’s entirely urban and congested, which makes it an unfair comparison to states with both urban and rural interstates.
Ranking just the states, Colorado has the worst roads, followed by Hawaii and Louisiana, which tied for second worst. At the other end of the spectrum, North Dakota had the fewest issues with its roads.