Spending per mile in Texas, adjusted for inflation, increased 174.5 percent from 1989 to 2008 on state-controlled roads. Four other states increased state highway spending by more than 100 percent after adjusting for inflation: Florida, Oregon, Washington and California.
After adjusting for inflation, two states-Connecticut and Delaware-decreased their spending per mile on state-controlled roads. Connecticut's spending decreased 35.2 percent per mile and Delaware's spending fell 22.4 percent per mile from 1989 to 2008.
The percentage of deficient bridges in the country fell from 37.8 percent of all bridges in 1989 to 23.7 percent in 2008. However, at the current rate of repair it would take over 50 years to fix all of the bridges that are deficient.
Overall, 40 states lowered the percentage of deficient bridges from 1989 to 2008. In 1989, over half, 56.3 percent, of Mississippi's bridges were deficient. In 2008, 24.7 percent were deficient. Nebraska went from having 55.1 percent of its bridges deficient in 1989 down to 23.6 percent in 2008.
On the other hand, the number of deficient bridges rose in 10 states: Hawaii, Alaska, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Idaho, Arizona, Utah, Ohio, South Carolina, and Oregon.
Urban Interstate Condition
Overall, the percentage of urban Interstates in poor condition across the U.S. fell slightly, from 6.6 percent in poor condition in 1989 to 5.4 percent in 2008.
Nevada and Missouri made remarkable turnarounds. In 1989, 47.8 of Nevada's urban Interstates were in poor condition. In 2008, just 1.6 percent were poor. Missouri's urban Interstate mileage in poor condition decreased from 46.7 percent in 1989 to 1.3 percent in 2008.
Meanwhile, seven states reported more than 10 percent of their urban Interstates in poor condition in 2008. A quarter of Hawaii's Interstates were in poor condition in 2008. In 1989, just 4.1 percent of California's urban Interstates were in poor condition. In 2008, that number had ballooned to 24.7 percent. Vermont went from 2.9 percent of urban Interstates in poor condition in 1989 to 17.5 percent in 2008. New Jersey, Oklahoma, New York and Louisiana are the other states with more than 10 percent of urban Interstates in poor condition.
Rural Interstate Condition
The percentage of rural Interstates rated in poor condition was reduced by over two-thirds, from 6.60 percent in 1989 to 1.93 percent in 2008. However, almost all of the improvements came before 1999.
Five states (Missouri, Rhode Island, Idaho, Nevada and Wisconsin) reduced their percentage of poor rural Interstates from over 20 percent to near zero. Two states reported rural conditions worsening by more than five percentage points from 1989 to 2008: New York and California. And just four states had more than 5 percent of rural Interstates in poor condition as of 2008: California, Alaska, New Jersey and New York.
Urban Interstate Congestion
Overall, congestion on Interstates decreased from 52.6 percent in 1989 to 48.6 percent in 2008. Between 1999 and 2008, however, the percentage of congested urban Interstates increased by 8.5 percentage points. Moreover, some of the overall reduction in congestion can certainly be attributed to the recent economic recession. Without the current recession, fewer states would have experienced reductions in congestion.
As it stands, 29 states reduced urban Interstate congestion between 1989 and 2008. Six states (Delaware, Massachusetts, Virginia, Alaska, Missouri and South Carolina) reported improvements greater than 20 percentage points. In 1989, 68.3 percent of Delaware's urban Interstates were congested. In 2008, 24.4 percent were congested. Massachusetts' urban Interstate congestion went from 68.5 percent in 1989 to 41.6 percent in 2008.