HRTPO has recently released the latest version of the State of Transportation in Hampton Roads report. The State of Transportation report details the current status and recent trends of all facets of the transportation system in Hampton Roads, including air, rail, water, and highways. Many aspects of the highway system are highlighted, including roadway usage, pavement condition, bridge conditions, congestion levels, commuting characteristics, roadway safety, transit usage, and active transportation (such as biking and walking).
There are a number of notable trends highlighted in the State of Transportation in Hampton Roads 2017 report, including:
- Regional roadway travel continues to grow - Following a 2.0% increase between 2014 and 2015, daily roadway travel in Hampton Roads increased by 2.2% between 2015 and 2016. This is the largest year-to-year increase in regional roadway travel since 2002, and regional travel levels have returned to the levels seen prior to the economic downturn.
- Regional air travel passenger levels increased – After decreasing each year since 2007, the trend reversed in 2016 with the number of passengers using Hampton Roads airports increasing 4% from 2015 to 2016.
- The Port of Virginia reached another record - The Port handled 21 million tons of general cargo in 2016, a record for the Port. This is 18% higher than the levels handled in 2007 and 40% higher than the amount of freight handled by the Port of Virginia during the peak of the recession in 2009.
- The number of structurally deficient bridges in the region has decreased – There are 64 bridges in Hampton Roads that are classified as structurally deficient as of 2017, down from 81 bridges in 2015. These 64 bridges comprise 5% of the bridges in the region.
- Pavement condition in Hamapton Roads has greatly improved – Only 7% of state-maintained Interstate and Primary roadways in Hampton Roads had a deficient pavement condition in 2016, down from 34% as recently as 2010.
- Intercity rail travel has increased – In spite of a small decrase in recent years, Amtrak ridership at stations in Hampton Roads increased 53% between 2007 and 2016.
The State of Transportation report also includes comparisons between Hampton Roads and other large metropolitan areas throughout the United States in order to examine how various aspects of the regional transportation system are performing. HRTPO staff used the 36 other metropolitan areas throughout the country with populations between one and three million people to make these comparisons.
Among these metropolitan areas, Hampton Roads ranks particularly high or low in:
- High Congestion Levels - Hampton Roads has the 9th highest travel time index – which is a measure of congestion levels – among the 37 metropolitan areas. The region also has the 6th highest planning time index (which measures the reliability of roadway network), and the 5th highest number of hours where congestion is prevalent.
- Driving Alone to Work - According to the Census Bureau, Hampton Roads has the 9th highest percentage of commuters driving alone to work among the 37 metropolitan areas.
- Commuting Across Jurisdictional Lines - Hampton Roads has the 3rd highest percentage of commuters that work in a jurisdiction that is different than the one that they reside in among the 37 areas according to the Census Bureau.
- Fuel Prices – Hampton Roads had the fourth lowest average fuel prices among the 37 metropolitan areas as of July 1st, 2017.
- Good Air Quality - According to the EPA, Hampton Roads had the 3rd fewest number of bad ozone days among the 37 metropolitan areas.