Valuing Transportation Infrastructure

Project Dates

06/05/2014 - 09/15/2014


This Workshop on Data and Statistics for Valuing Transportation Infrastructure and Transportation’s Contribution to the Economy initiated a 3-year Transportation Research Board (TRB) effort to review methods used to estimate the value of transportation infrastructure and its role in the economy and how these methods might be extended and improved to provide more meaningful statistics for decision makers. The federal Moving Ahead for Progress for the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), signed into law on July 6, 2012, requires the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) to provide “a national accounting of expenditures and capital stocks on each mode of transportation and intermodal combination.” The MAP-21 requirement posed very challenging demands on current methods for data collection, analysis, and reporting to produce a robust, reliable, and current national accounting that can be used to support government decision making. In addition, MAP-21 introduced performance-based management for federal surface transportation programs, potentially opening the way to new data sources.
TRB commissioned the Upjohn Institute to write a paper that discussed alternative strategies for using data and statistics in estimating infrastructure value. The paper discussed the relative strengths and weaknesses of these methods, and the potential benefits of improved methods and data. The white paper was intended to help keep participants focused on practical solutions to current issues with existing data. Then the workshop provided ideas for what statistics to generate at the national level in the near term and state DOTs with ideas for proceeding within their own domains using state or regionally available statistics.


White Paper on Valuing Transportation Infrastructure, Randall W. Eberts (2014)


National Academy of Sciences

Subject Area

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT; Transportation and infrastructure