Policy Study

Georgia Ranks 26th in the Nation in Highway Performance and Cost-Effectiveness

Georgia’s best rankings are urban arterial pavement condition, structurally deficient bridges, and rural arterial pavement condition.

Georgia’s highway system ranks 26th in the nation in overall cost-effectiveness and condition, according to the Annual Highway Report by Reason Foundation. This is the same ranking the state had in the previous report.

In safety and performance categories, Georgia ranks 26th in overall fatality rate, 7th in structurally deficient bridges, 42nd in traffic congestion, 15th in urban Interstate pavement condition, and 32nd in rural Interstate pavement condition.

On spending, Georgia ranks 22nd in total spending per mile and 9th in capital and bridge costs per mile.

“To improve in the rankings, Georgia needs to improve its urbanized area congestion. Georgia is in the bottom 10 of all states for congestion and has three of the most congested Interstate corridors in the country. Compared to neighboring states, the report finds Georgia’s overall highway performance is better than Florida (ranks 40th), but worse than Alabama (ranks 19th) and South Carolina (ranks 6th),” said Baruch Feigenbaum, lead author of the Annual Highway Report and senior managing director of transportation policy at Reason Foundation. “Georgia is doing worse than comparable states like North Carolina (ranks 14th) and Virginia (ranks 21st).”

Georgia’s best rankings are in urban arterial pavement condition (2nd), structurally deficient bridges (7th), and rural arterial pavement condition (7th).

Georgia’s worst rankings are in administration disbursements per mile (43rd) and urbanized area congestion (42nd).

Georgia’s state-controlled highway mileage makes it the 13th largest highway system in the country.

Reason Foundation’s Annual Highway Report measures the condition and cost-effectiveness of state-controlled highways in 13 categories, including pavement condition, traffic congestion, structurally deficient bridges, traffic fatalities, and spending (capital, maintenance, administrative, overall) per mile.

The Annual Highway Report is based on spending and performance data submitted by state highway agencies to the federal government for 2018 as well as urban congestion data from INRIX and bridge condition data from the Better Roads inventory for 2019.