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July 2011 Traffic Volume Trends

Travel Trends (July 2011)

Based on preliminary reports from the State Highway Agencies, travel during July 2011 on all roads and streets in the nation changed by -2.5 percent (-6.7 billion vehicle miles) resulting in estimated travel for the month at 261.8** billion vehicle-miles.

This total includes 91.9 billion vehicle-miles on rural roads and 169.9 billion vehicle-miles on urban roads and streets.

Cumulative Travel changed by -1.2 percent (-21.5 billion vehicle miles).

The larger changes to rural and urban travel are primarily because of the expansion in urban boundaries reflected in the 2000 census. Travel estimates for 2004 and beyond will also reflect this adjustment.

Travel for the current month, the cumulative yearly total, as well as the moving 12-month total on all roads and streets is shown below. Similar totals for each year since 1986 are also included.

Travel in Millions of Vehicle Miles All Roads and Streets
Year July Year to Date Moving 12-Month
1986 171,114 1,051,927 1,808,832
1987 175,783 1,104,674 1,890,987
1988 184,779 1,166,778 1,986,431
1989 190,985 1,215,695 2,074,503
1990 195,470 1,249,210 2,140,555
1991 198,387 1,253,637 2,151,928
1992 206,616 1,298,275 2,216,853
1993 209,838 1,326,364 2,275,240
1994 214,778 1,356,007 2,326,348
1995 217,188 1,405,475 2,407,055
1996 225,109 1,428,788 2,446,088
1997 236,713 1,482,368 2,535,782
1998 239,944 1,512,756 2,590,760
1999 243,116 1,536,698 2,649,305
2000 245,190 1,593,847 2,736,608
2001 250,597 1,614,750 2,768,426
2002 256,436 1,652,060 2,832,921
2003 262,172 1,665,223 2,868,672
2004 265,939 1,716,778 2,941,777
2005 266,882 1,739,468 2,987,479
2006 263,287 1,749,744 2,999,707
2007 267,058 1,763,598 3,028,225
2008 261,987 1,738,725 3,006,251
2009 266,562 1,733,804 2,971,607
2010 268,542 1,736,726 2,980,517
2011 261,800 1,715,271 2,978,519

Traffic Volume Trends is a monthly report based on hourly traffic count data. These data, collected at approximately 4,000 continuous traffic counting locations nationwide, are used to determine the percent change in traffic for the current month compared to the same month in the previous year. This percent change is applied to the travel for the same month of the previous year to obtain an estimate of travel for the current month. Because of the limited sample sizes, caution should be used with theses estimates. The highway Performance Monitoring System provides more accurate information on an anual basis.

** System entries may not add up to the give "All Systems" total due to rounding on pages 2 to 8.

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Daniel Jenkins
Office of Highway Policy Information
202-366-1067
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