Let’s build the cities we want to see in 100 years
The Verge By Andrew J. Hawkins
November 2, 2020
Some of the most important parts of our country are literally falling apart. Our airports are crumbling. Our buses and rail networks are hemorrhaging riders and falling into disrepair. Many of our bridges are so old they’re eligible for Medicare. And with the global pandemic crisis driving cities into an unprecedented budget crisis, things are likely to get worse before they get better. Every four years, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) releases its “Infrastructure Report Card,” which assesses everything from ports and dams to transit, schools, and hazardous waste management. In 2017, the group gave the country a D+, the same grade it delivered in 2013. The US is on track to receive the same grade (or worse) in 2021. Things shouldn’t have gotten this bad. Investing in infrastructure is a sure-fire way to juice job numbers in the midst of rising unemployment, with studies showing that every $1 billion of highway spending supports 13,000 jobs for one year. It’s the rare point of bipartisan consensus — and for the last four years, the White House and Democrats in Congress have made repeated overtures to cooperation on an infrastructure deal. But there is still next to nothing to show for it, and much of the national infrastructure is simply four years older.
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