(The Center Square) – Michigan ranked 10th in the nation for worst roads, according to MoneyGeek study.
MoneyGeek analyzed overall road quality and investment levels per lane mile nationwide and found that more road spending did not necessarily lead to better road quality.
The study used a Road Roughness Index, the weighted average value of observed measurements of the state’s International Roughness Index (IRI) to rank the states.
The Federal Highway Administration says an IRI measurement can determine road condition: below 95 indicates a good road, between 95 and 170 is fair, and above 170 is poor.
MoneyGeek ranked the states by comparing each state’s urban and suburban highway roughness measurement and state and local government highway spending. MoneyGeek used the following metrics to compile the rankings:
- Road Roughness Index: We developed a composite roughness score of all major urban roads in each state by weighting each measured pavement roughness category and aggregating this information across the entire state system.
- Percentage of poor versus good condition: We designated each measured pavement roughness category into larger groups and compared the number of lane miles across the state by upper and lower pavement roughness groups.
- Capital expenditures per lane mile: This value is calculated as the state’s total capital expenditures for highways divided by the total number of lane miles in each state’s operating highway system.
- Total Expenditures for Highways: This value is calculated as the total government expenditures for capital expenditures and other expenditures for highways
The states with the worst roads were:
- District of Colombia
- Rhode Island
- New York
- New Jersey
The study found that 25% of Michigan’s roads were in poor condition and 37% were in good condition. Wolverine State ranked 35th in capital spending.
The five states with the least rugged roads were
- New Hampshire
The main results of the study included
- In the United States, approximately one in 10 road miles is in poor condition.
- Rhode Island and California ranked worst for road roughness, with 40% and 37% of roads in poor condition, respectively.
- Idaho and New Hampshire had the least rough roads and had among the lowest capital expenditures per mile.
- States generally spend proportionally to the use of their roads, which reflects the need to combat wear and tear and the way roads are funded – usually through gasoline taxes.
- However, the amount each state spends on roads is not correlated with road quality after adjusting for vehicle miles travelled.