Vehicle traffic exposure
Indicators on this page estimate traffic exposure for Minnesotans living within 300 meters (m) of busy roads, where air pollution from motor vehicle traffic is highest. Busy roads are roadway segments that have annual average daily traffic counts above 10,000 cars or trucks. Learn more about how these indicators were calculated.
One in three Minnesotans live near busy roads
Living near busy roads comes with many traffic-related exposures, such as air pollution, noise, and dangerous intersections. It can even lower property values, impacting people’s well-being. Measuring the number and percent of people living near busy roads is one way to estimate and compare traffic exposure across communities.
Minnesotans living near busy roads, by census tract (2017)
In almost half of Minnesota’s 1,328 census tracts, less than 20 percent of residents live near busy roads. Highest rates of traffic exposure, where more than 60 percent of residents live near busy roads, impact about 16 percent of Minnesota census tracts. Most of these tracts are located in the Twin Cities metro area.
There are socioeconomic disparities in traffic exposure
Census tracts whose poverty level is higher than the state average have the highest traffic exposure in Minnesota. On average, about 54 percent of people living in high poverty census tracts live within 300m of busy roads compared to 28 percent in census tracts whose poverty level is lower than the state average.