Grading Our Country’s Infrastructure
When it comes to our country’s infrastructure, we often assume that everything is in fine working condition since our government “takes care of it.” However, despite our government’s best efforts, our infrastructure has been in decline for years. New federal construction projects are required to restore our infrastructure to an acceptable state.
In this article, our Clearwater construction attorneys will examine our country’s infrastructure report card to determine the extent of our infrastructure’s fall from grace.
Infrastructure in the United States received a D+ rating from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). Globally, the United States is ranked 12th in overall infrastructure. With over 2 million trained Americans waiting for the call to rebuild our infrastructure, it is appalling that our country has failed to implement comprehensive measures to begin the restoration process.
Unfortunately, the safest, most highly trained workforce in the world is waiting on the sidelines while 1 in 9 U.S. bridges is deemed “structurally deficient.” However, if you are fortunate enough to sign a federal construction contract, a Clearwater construction attorney can help guide you through the process.
The U.S. Infrastructure Report Card
Breaking down the report card issued to the U.S. by ASCE displays a widespread ineptitude to maintain our country’s infrastructure on every level.
- Bridges: C+
- Dams: D
- Drinking Water: D
- Energy: D+
- Hazardous Waste: D+
- Inland Waterways: D
- Airports: D
- Levees: D
- Parks and Recreation: D+
- Ports: C+
- Rail: B
- Roads: D
- Schools: D+
- Solid Waste: C+
- Transit: D-
- Wastewater: D+
Breaking Down the Problem
In the wake of World War II, the U.S. initiated a series of groundbreaking infrastructure initiatives that resulted in the creation of the world’s greatest highway system as well as a fleet of airports, an innovative waterworks system, and other impactful infrastructure projects. Today, our infrastructure is trumped by countries like China, Japan, Germany, and the Netherlands, who spend a greater portion of their budget on infrastructure restoration and development.
ASCE’s evaluations put the infrastructure deficit at over $2 trillion. Inadequacies in our surface transportation systems cost U.S. citizens $147 billion annually. It gets worse. Currently, 1 out of every 5 miles of highway is rated as being in “poor condition,” two-fifths of our urban interstates are congested, we suffer 240,000 broken water mains every year, and our power grid’s 640,000 high-voltage transmission lines are maxed out.
It’s only a matter of time before the U.S. government starts handing out federal contracts for infrastructure projects. Although our workforce faces a tough job on the horizon, the construction industry will be the catalyst to herald in a new age of infrastructure.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.