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FHWA Home / Policy & Governmental Affairs / 2002 Conditions and Performance

Conditions and Performance

Status of the Nation's Highways, Bridges, and Transit:
2002 Conditions and Performance Report

Executive Summary
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Executive Summary
Part I: Description of Current System
Ch1: The Role of Highways and Transit
Ch2: System and Use Characteristics
Ch3: System Conditions
Ch4: Operational Performance
Ch5: Safety Performance
Ch6: Finance

Part II: Investment Performance Analyses
Ch7: Capital Investment Requirements
Ch8: Comparison of Spending and Investment Requirements
Ch9: Impacts of Investment
Ch10: Sensitivity Analysis

Part III: Bridges
Ch11: Federal Bridge Program Status of the Nation's Bridges

Part IV: Special Topics
Ch12: National Security
Ch13: Highway Transportation in Society
Ch14: The Importance of Public Transportation
Ch15: Macroeconomic Benefits of Highway Investment
Ch16: Pricing
Ch17: Transportation Asset Management
Ch18: Travel Model Improvement Program
Ch19: Air Quality
Ch20: Federal Safety Initiatives
Ch21: Operations Strategies
Ch22: Freight

Part V: Supplemental Analyses of System Components
Ch23: Interstate System
Ch24: National Highway System
Ch25: NHS Freight Connectors
Ch26: Highway-Rail Grade Crossings
Ch27: Transit Systems on Federal Lands

Appendix A: Changes in Highway Investment Requirements Methodology
Appendix B: Bridge Investment/Performance Methodology
Appendix C: Transit Investment Condition and Investment Requirements Methodology
List of Contacts

Ch 12: National Security

The terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, highlighted the need to better understand transportation security. The investment requirement projections described elsewhere in this report do not explicitly consider security-related benefits of investment in the highway and transit networks. Highways and transit, however, impact security in four important ways.

First, the Strategic Highway Network (STRAHNET) allows the Department of Defense to mobilize against global and domestic threats. STRAHNET is a 61,044-mile system of roads deemed necessary for emergency mobilization and peacetime movement. This mileage includes the 45,376-mile Interstate Highway system and 15,668 miles of other important public highways.

Strategic Highway Corridor Network (STRAHNET) Mileage in 2000

Interstate 45,376
Total 61,044

The percentage of STRAHNET pavement mileage with acceptable ride quality increased from 93.6 percent in 1995 to 96.3 percent in 2000.

Bridges are an important part of the STRAHNET. In 2000, there were 102,859 STRAHNET bridges. The percent of STRAHNET bridges rated deficient declined from 23.9 percent in 1995 to 21.5 percent in 2000.

Second, highways and transit systems also allow Federal, State, and local officials to respond to emergencies by evacuating populated areas. Highways need excess capacity to accommodate a sudden flow of vehicles in one direction, and to simultaneously allow the quick movement of emergency vehicles in the opposite direction. Transit systems need capacity to deal with the rapid evacuation of metropolitan areas.

Another element of transportation security is the need to improve the integrity of trucks and containers. The Department of Transportation is working with other agencies to create a system to track containers and identify the custodians of the cargo during transportation.

Finally, highways and transit systems are themselves strategic assets. Disruptions can paralyze regional or national economies, making it important to "harden" these structures against threats. The Department of Transportation is working with other agencies to better monitor the critical components of transit systems and better understand how to "harden" sensitive structures like bridges and tunnels.

Page last modified on November 7, 2014
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000