The Associated Press recently reported that motorists logged a record 29.7 billion miles of travel on Iowa's streets and highways last year, according to the Iowa Department of Transportation. The travel represents a 62-percent increase since 1980 and more than double the amount of vehicle travel since the mid-1960s.
State planners are projecting vehicle traffic will increase 41 billion miles annually over the next 20 years, increasing 38 percent.
Road travel in Iowa over the past decade has increased at a faster rate than travel nationwide. According to the Federal Highway Administration, between 1900 and 1999, the number of vehicle miles driven on Iowa's streets and highways rose by 28 percent, compared with 24.9 percent throughout the United States.
Interstate highways in Iowa are especially busy, with the number of miles traveled up 41 percent in the 1990s.
Officials say heavy traffic has become more noticeable on Interstate 80 across the state and Interstate 35 in central Iowa.