TxDOT Spending: Austin Has Not Received Less Per Capita Than Other Large Metros

This is one of four truths published by Farm&City in a report presented to the CAMPO Transportation Policy Board, February 9, 2020

At the November 2019 CAMPO TPB meeting, Farm&City Director Jay Blazek Crossley proclaimed that TxDOT spending in the 6 county CAMPO region has been higher than in any of the other large Texas metros.

He was referring to our work on the Texas Transportation Equity Assessment that focuses on systemic inequity at Texas MPOs. In that report, we examined total TxDOT spending from 2006-2015 per capita. Using that data to inform our analysis, we were able to conclude that the Austin region received more spending per capita than Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, & San Antonio, all larger regions in terms of area or population.

We recently pulled more current data to ensure that we were reporting an accurate understanding to CAMPO leadership and looked at the rate of TxDOT spending in every MPO from 2006 through 2019. We were able to confirm that the Austin region has received more per capita from TxDOT than Houston in all years, and more than San Antonio in all years, except the last two, which were very close. However, Dallas-Fort Worth did receive more than Austin per capita from 2009 through 2014.

For over a decade, the Austin region has consistently received more TxDOT spending on roads than peer metro regions, besides the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

There are four blog posts in this series:

The Myth of Austin Not Building Enough Roads Isn’t True
TXDOT: Austin Has Not Received Less Per Capita Than Other Large Metros
Vehicle Miles Traveled: Austinites Drive More Than Other Texans
Sprawl: Austin is the Most Sub-urban Large Metro in Texas