Investing in Transportation

Investment in Transportation Assets

Highways, streets, railroad lines, transit systems, ports, and other transportation fixed assets enable the movement of people and goods.

Investment in transportation fixed assets helps build and maintain these critical resources. The pattern of transportation investment has varied over time.

Federal, State, and local governments, the private sector, and households all invest in transportation. Investment is defined as spending on assets that take more than a year to consume and include transportation structures, motor vehicles, and other equipment (aircraft, ships and boats, etc.).

Investment in transportation structures comprises transportation assets that have a fixed location, such as highways and streets.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) provides data on fixed investment in new transportation assets (structures and equipment) and household purchase of transportation assets in the National Income and Product Accounts. The BEA data on fixed investment in new transportation assets cover all public and private (business) investments in transportation, except pipeline and natural gas.

Spending on pipeline infrastructure is embedded in mining infrastructure investment. All public and private investment data are on new structures and equipment and do not include maintenance and repair of existing structures or equipment.