Challenges in Meeting Utah’s Growing Transportation Needs

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Utah faces a major challenge as the demand on the state’s transportation system continues to rapidly grow. From 1991 to 2001 Utah’s population increased 28%, while travel, measured by Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) increased by 52% (Figure 1). During that same period highway capacity (lane miles) on the state system has increased only about 2%. The rise in travel is a national trend, and the Federal Highway Administration forecasts that travel will increase another 50 percent over the next 20 years. The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) expects to see a similar trend in Utah.


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