The American Trucking Associations released its latest forecast for the next decade of freight transportation, projecting continued growth for freight transportation overall and for the trucking industry.
“As the U.S. population grows and the economy increases with it, we will see continued gains in demand for freight transportation,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello.
In ATA Freight Transportation Forecast 2017, freight volumes are projected to grow 2.8% in 2017, and then follow that up with 3.4% annual growth through 2023. After that, ATA projects a more modest growth rate of 2.3%. In 2017, ATA projects that 15.18 billion tons of freight will be moved by all modes – a figure that rises 36.6% to 20.73 billion tons in 2028.
“Over the forecast period, capacity shortfalls will develop,” the report said. “We are starting to see some selected tightness in freight handling capacity, enough to suggest that capacity expansion will be required if the modes are going to be able to handle anticipated growth.”
“While overall truck volumes will continue to rise, and trucking will remain the dominant freight mode – its share of freight tonnage will dip to 67.2% by 2028, with pipelines picking up most of the additional market share, and, to a lesser extent, rail intermodal,” Costello said.
“As we look ahead at the rest of the 21st Century, the projections found in Freight Transportation Forecast are invaluable to decision makers in the board room and the hearing room alike,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. “Having good, accurate data is critical to making sure businesses are making appropriate investments in their companies and that our government is making the proper investments in our nation’s infrastructure.”