Per Capita Waterway Coverage in US States

Jun 19, 2018
Chart of Waterways per Thousand People in US States

The chart above shows the miles of waterways per thousand people in US states.  The top six states in this metric are all from the South.


  • The difference between the state with the most waterways per capita, Arkansas, and the state with the least, New Hampshire, is 0.63 miles.
  • Arkansas has 83.97 times the waterways per capita that New Hampshire does.
  • Only Arkansas and Louisiana have more than half-a-mile of waterways for every thousand people.


  • Waterway data is from 2013.
  • Population data is from 2010.
  • Waterway and population data come from different sources.
  • All figures are rounded to the nearest thousandth.
  • Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Hawaii, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Utah, Vermont, and Wyoming did not have any waterway data.


Southern states do so well in this metric because they also have the most total waterways, and they also rank pretty high in waterway coverage with a few small Northeastern states also thrown into the mix.

The United States as a whole has 0.088 miles of waterways for every thousand people ranking it under Maryland and above Illinois.


United States Census Bureau.  "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2016."  Accessed December 12, 2017.

United States Department of Transportation.  2015.  "State Transportation by the Numbers."  Accessed March 21, 2018.

Filed under: Charts and Graphs