Office of Operations Freight Management and Operations

Freight Facts and Figures 2013

Table 4-1. Transportation Fixed Assets: 2000, 2005, and 2010-2012

Fixed transportation assets reflect the important 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 and maintained 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 $27.7 trillion in 2000 to $48.7 trillion in 2012 (current U.S. dollars). Transportation equipment and structures (private and public) accounted for approximately 12 percent of the total in 2012. The components of transportation fixed assets and their 2012 values are private transportation equipment ($1.11 trillion), private transportation structures ($690 billion), and government transportation structures ($3.93 trillion).1

1See the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis, Fixed Assets tables 1.1, 2.1, 3.1s, and 7.1b for total and transportation fixed assets data (  Transportation fixed assets include both passenger and freight modes.

Table 4-1

Table in Excel format | Historical data

Billions of current dollars

Blank cell. 2000 2005 2010 2011 2012 Percent change,
2000 to 2012
Private Sector
Transportation Equipment1 828 980 1,001 1,037 1,108 33.8
Transportation Structures2 450 557 656 680 690 53.5
Public Sector
Highways 1,435 2,056 2,939 3,132 3,265 127.5
Transportation Structures2 261 413 592 635 663 154.3
Federal 6 10 14 15 13 104.7
State and Local 254 403 578 621 650 155.5

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 October 17, 2013.


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