Office of Operations Freight Management and Operations

Freight Facts and Figures 2011

Table 4-1. Transportation Fixed Assets: 2000-2010

Fixed transportation assets reflect the significant role of both public and private sectors in moving freight. Freight railroad facilities and services are almost entirely private, while private-sector trucks operate over public highways. Air-cargo services in the private sector operate in public airways and mostly public airports, and ships in the private sector serve public waterways and both public and private port facilities. Pipelines are mostly privately owned, although significantly controlled by public regulation. In the public sector, virtually all truck routes are owned by state or local governments. Airports and harbors are typically owned by public authorities, although terminals are usually owned or managed by private operators. Air and water navigation is mostly controlled by the Federal government, and safety is regulated by all levels of government.

Total private and public fixed assets grew from just over $26.9 trillion in 2000 to more than $44.7 trillion in 2010 (current U.S. dollars). Transportation equipment and structures (private and public) accounted for 11 percent of the total in 2010. The components of transportation fixed assets and their 2010 values are private transportation equipment ($1.0 trillion), private transportation structures ($656 billion), and government transportation structures ($3.5 trillion).1

1 Fixed assets are for 2010 and include both passenger and freight transportation. See the Bureau of Economic Analysis at, tables 2.1, 3.1s, and 7.1b.

Table in Excel format | Historical data

Billions of current dollars

Blank cell. 2000 2005 2009 2010 Percent change,
2000 to 2010
Private Sector
Transportation Equipment1 828 980 1,012 1,001 20.9
Transportation Structures2 450 557 637 656 45.9
Public Sector
Highways 1,435 2,056 2,836 2,939 104.8
Transportation Structures2 261 413 564 592 126.9
Federal 6 10 14 14 117.2
State and Local 254 403 551 578 127.1

1Includes trucks, truck trailers, buses, automobiles, aircraft, ships, boats, and railroad equipment.

2Includes physical structures for all modes of transportation.

Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis, National Economic Accounts, Fixed Assests Tables, tables 2.1, 3.1s, and 7.1b, available at as of September 23, 2011.


To view Excel files, you can use the Microsoft Excel Viewer.

Office of Operations