DENVER -- Roads and bridges that are falling apart, congested or otherwise lack safety improvements are costing Coloradans $6.8 billion a year, according to a report released Wednesday by TRIP, a Washington, D.C.-based national transportation organization.
When broken down, costs amount to a total of $2,162 on average per driver in Denver alone.
The report found that throughout the state, 41 percent of all roads "are in poor condition" and six percent of Colorado's bridges are "structurally deficient."
“Our transportation infrastructure is falling further and further behind. If we want to continue to grow our economy, ensure our quality of life, and create jobs, we must build and invest in a system that provides mobility choices for everyone -- from increased lanes to technology solutions to bicycle and pedestrian options," said Kelly Brough, president and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. "Transportation is our top priority and we urge lawmakers to join us in finding a long-term, sustainable funding source for our infrastructure needs.”'
The report also found that staying traffic for too long and an increase in crashes is what's adding to an already enormous price tag.
"We don't have enough money to spend on roads, the gas tax is what funds transportation in Colorado. It hasn't been changed since 1991," said CDOT spokesperson Amy Ford.
CDOT officials said last week they get around $100 million a year from FASTER funding -- a bill that increased your vehicle registration fees in 2009 to help pay for bad bridges -- which is something that has helped pay to replace 200 bridges. CDOT currently maintains more than 6,000 across the state.
A move that has received some push back from the public, but that is generally favored by CDOT officials, is to increase gas taxes in the state.