Policy Study

Nevada Ranks 27th in the Nation in Highway Performance and Cost-Effectiveness

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

Nevada’s highway system ranks 27th in the nation in overall cost-effectiveness and condition, according to the Annual Highway Report by Reason Foundation. This is no change from the previous report, where Nevada also ranked 27th overall.

In safety and performance categories, Nevada ranks 27th in overall fatality rate, 2nd in structurally deficient bridges, 18th in traffic congestion, 24th in urban Interstate pavement condition, and 20th in rural Interstate pavement condition.

On spending, Nevada ranks 30th in total spending per mile and 33rd in capital and bridge costs per mile.

“To improve in the rankings, Nevada needs to decrease its administrative spending per mile and rural fatality rate. Nevada is in the bottom 10 states for both categories. Compared to neighboring states, the report finds Nevada’s overall highway performance is better than California (ranks 43rd) and Oregon (28th), but worse than Idaho (5th),” said Baruch Feigenbaum, lead author of the Annual Highway Report and senior managing director of transportation policy at Reason Foundation. “Nevada is doing worse than comparable states like Arizona (23rd) and Utah (ranks 17th).”

Nevada’s best rankings are in structurally deficient bridges (2nd) and rural arterial pavement condition (2nd).

Nevada’s worst rankings are administrative disbursements per mile (41st) and rural fatality rate (41st).

Nevada’s state-controlled highway mileage makes it the 41st 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.