- Category: Infrastructure (Government Role)
- Published: Monday, 29 October 2007
- Written by Howard M. Unger
Is Chicken Little right? Former Commerce Secretary Norm Mineta and others on America’s crumbing infrastructure
Projects like the interstate highway system helped make the United States a global power, allowing freight and people to move about the country. Our airports are equally important domestically as well as our link to the world. Not to mention the whole specter of safety highlighted by falling bridges and urban sinkholes. The American Society of Civil Engineers says that repairing the nation’s bridges, alone, would cost at least $9.4 billion per year for the next 20 years. Another estimate by the ASCE puts the cost of bringing the entire US infrastructure up to an “adequate” level at $1.6 trillion. With billions spent on the Iraqi war, trillions more needed to bail out social security—and billions and billions more proposed for education and national healthcare, you get the picture. Former Commerce Secretary Norm Mineta, Bill Marcuson, president of the American Society of Civil Engineers, MN State Rep Phyllis Kahn, and other experts highlight some of the issues and proposed solutions: higher gasoline taxes, more toll roads, and public-private partnerships. Have a read, have a think. Good ideas desperately needed—this rig is running in reverse.