Poor road conditions are costing Minnesotans $1.8 billion per year, a recent report found.
According to a May 24 report from TRIP, a Washington D.C.-based transportation research nonprofit, driving on deteriorated roads costs Minnesota drivers in the form of increased repairs, vehicle depreciation and fuel consumption.
In fact, the average annual cost to a Minnesota driver is $543.
According to TRIP, 35% of Minnesota's roads are in poor or mediocre condition. And 5% of bridges are in poor or “structurally deficient” condition.
The report also notes 27% of Minnesota's bridges are more than 50 years old, the age when they typically require rehabilitation or replacement.
While traffic on Minnesota's roads dipped significantly during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is returning to normal levels. According to the report, traffic in Minnesota dropped by 37% in April 2020.
But by March of this year, traffic was just 1% below the levels of March 2019.
Not only could making road improvements save drivers money, it could also save lives, the report argues.
Between 2015 and 2019, 1,905 people died on Minnesota's highways. The report points to a study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety that found every $100 million could cut traffic fatalities by 44 and serious injuries by 760 over 20 years.