RENO, Nev. — Reno-area roads are among the nation's roughest, costing drivers $771 a year in additional vehicle operating costs, according to a report by a national transportation research group.
The report, released Thursday by the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit group TRIP, says 55 percent of Reno-area roads are in poor condition, compared with 11 percent in Las Vegas.
Reno ranks second out of 62 cities with populations between 250,000 and 500,000 in both the percentage of roads in poor condition and in additional vehicle operating costs.
While 55 percent of Reno's roads are poor, 31 percent are mediocre, 2 percent are fair and 12 percent are good, according to the report.
City of Reno officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Las Vegas ranks 67th out of 75 urban areas with populations greater than 500,000 in percentage of roads in poor condition. Las Vegas has 11 percent poor, 45 percent mediocre, 15 percent fair and 29 percent good.
"Nevada's preservation backlog is estimated to be $2.1 billion," Darrell Armuth, board member of the Nevada Highway Users Coalition, said in a statement. "To preserve the existing highway system, the state will need to immediately increase funding by $285 million for the next 12 years."
Failure to do so will hinder economic growth and road conditions, he warned. Driving on roads in disrepair increases consumer costs by accelerating vehicle wear and depreciation, and by increasing maintenance, fuel and tire costs.
The only city worse than Reno among midsize cities was Antioch, Calif., where 64 percent of roads are in poor condition and motorists pay an extra $793 because of it. Just behind Reno were Santa Rosa, Calif., where 51 percent of roads are poor; and Trenton, N.J. and Hemet, Calif., at 48 percent each.
Among the largest cities, the four worst are in California — Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, 64 percent poor; San Francisco-Oakland, 60 percent; San Jose, 56 percent; and San Diego, 55 percent.
Armuth said a lack of funding threatens the conditions of the nation's roads and highways.
"Without a significant boost in transportation funding at the federal, state and local level, conditions will continue to deteriorate, drivers will continue to pay the price and our economy will suffer," he said.