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Journal Articles Research in Transportation Economics Year : 2005

French motorways: experience and assessment

Alain Fayard
  • Function : Author
Francesco Gaeta
  • Function : Author


The French road network includes 976,000 km of roads, 38,600 km of which compose the central government's road network (national roads, free and tolled motorways) under the responsibility of the French Roads Directorate. The rest of the network is run either by counties (360,000 km) or by local districts (595,000 km). The French regions (France being divided into 22 regions), which contribute to the financing of the national and district road networks, do not manage any road. It is worth noting that the whole French road network carries roughly 78% of freight traffic and 90% of passenger traffic, the remaining being mostly borne by rail. On the central government's road network, which corresponds to 4% of the whole road network, 40% of traffic is concentrated, in particular on motorways and more generally on toll motorways (7,840 km), which support a length-weighted average of 26,400 vehicles per day. Generally speaking, the average daily flow per kilometer is about three times larger on motorways than on ordinary national roads and about 30 times larger than on local roads.


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Dates and versions

halshs-00754050 , version 1 (20-11-2012)



Alain Fayard, Francesco Gaeta, Emile Quinet. French motorways: experience and assessment. Research in Transportation Economics, 2005, 15, pp.93-105. ⟨10.1016/S0739-8859(05)15008-2⟩. ⟨halshs-00754050⟩
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