New Jersey, Rhode Island: Highways to Hell
The nation’s top-performing, most cost-effective highways can be found in North Dakota, Kansas, South Dakota, Nebraska, and South Carolina, according to the latest edition of the Reason Foundation Annual Highway Report.
Reason Foundation’s Annual Highway Report ranks the performance of state highway systems in 11 categories, including pavement condition, deficient bridges, traffic congestion, fatality rates, spending per mile of state-controlled highway, and system administrative costs.
The significant differences between state highway systems are illustrated by the huge disparity in the spending per mile figures. West Virginia spent the least—$35,047 per mile of state-controlled highway, while New Jersey spent the most—$2,069,020 per mile of state-controlled highway.
Overall, New Jersey ranked last, 50th, in the nation in performance and cost-effectiveness due in part to having the nation’s worst urban traffic congestion while also spending the most money per mile. Rhode Island, Alaska, Hawaii, and Connecticut joined New Jersey in the bottom five of the overall rankings.
In some of the individual categories, Wyoming’s highways had the least traffic congestion, while drivers in New Jersey and California experienced the worst traffic jams. Alaska had the bumpiest urban interstate pavement condition, and Delaware had the smoothest.
Top 5 States with Best Highways
1. North Dakota
3. South Dakota
5. South Carolina
Bottom 5 States with Worst Highways
49. Rhode Island
50. New Jersey