After Bridge Disaster, Sanders Calls for $1 Trillion to Address Infrastructure Collapse
In an op-ed published Tuesday, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) pointed to Monday’s Cincinnati bridge collapse, which killed one person, as further evidence that the U.S. desperately needs to upgrade its infrastructure—from bridges and roads to railways and levees.
“Our infrastructure is collapsing, and the American people know it,” wrote Sanders, the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “The Interstate 75 bridge collapse in Cincinnati on Monday is only the latest example.”
The Cincinnati overpass, which was undergoing demolition, collapsed late Monday and killed a construction worker.
While the overpass did not appear to have any structural issues, one of nine bridges in the U.S. is in fact structurally deficient and nearly a quarter are functionally obsolete, Sanders said—illustrating his point: “For many years we have underfunded the maintenance of our nation’s physical infrastructure. That has to change. It is time to rebuild America.”
Sanders said he will soon announce legislation for a $1 trillion investment, over five years, to modernize the country’s physical infrastructure and create 13 million jobs.
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In 2013, the American Civil Society of Engineers gave the U.S. a D+ grade on its infrastructure, estimating that $3.6 trillion in investment was necessary to fix the nation’s highways, dams, rail and aviation systems, and more.
Earlier this month, the Obama administration announced new steps, as part of the Build America Investment Initiative, to improve ports, roads, bridges, broadband networks, drinking water and sewer systems, and other projects.
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