An infrastructure crisis?
In the 2016 presidential campaign, both frontrunner candidates claimed they wanted to increase infrastructure spending in America. Since the election, that sentiment has continued across the country. At Strong Towns, we have a very different perspective. In a nation that has spent more than seven decades frantically spreading out, there are trillions of dollars of unproductive infrastructure already in the ground today waiting for us to make better use of.
At Strong Towns, we see that our cities, towns and neighborhoods are dripping with opportunity. These opportunities are not of the mega-project variety. They are small, but they can positively transform everything about how we live our lives.
If you'd like to be part of changing the American conversation about infrastructure and helping your town focus on small-scale investments instead of risky mega-projects, it's time to become a member of the Strong Towns movement.
There’s every reason not to build a freeway through a poor, mostly-black neighborhood in Shreveport, Louisiana. So why is the state government taking money away from needed maintenance to push this bad project forward?
Early in my career, I helped plan a highway bypass for a small town that I was sure would generate a positive return on investment in the form of economic growth. The only problem? The actual numbers we calculated told a different story.
Devolution isn't so scary when the alternative is this crazy.
Cities have to live with constraints that the federal government does not.
Interested in seeing how these concepts apply in your city? Bring Strong Towns to your community for a presentation about America's infrastructure crisis and how your city can get the best return on investment for its infrastructure developments.
We interviewed several leaders from around the country for their thoughts on federal infrastructure spending. Here's what they had to say:
Today, Heyden Walker and Chuck Marohn discuss the highway I-35 project in Austin and the need for better transparency in transportation spending.
In this podcast, Professor of Architecture, Thomas Fisher, discusses a design-thinking approach of bottom-up vs. top-down decisionmaking, and the danger of building the wrong types of infrastructure for the future of America.
In this interview, Chuck Marohn and Russ Roberts, host of the EconTalk podcast, discuss the political appeal of infrastructure spending vs. the economics perspective. They also talk about how to ensure a good return on investment and how to focus on smaller-scale projects.
Ed Erfurt discusses his perspective as a local leader in a small town on what infrastructure is worth investing in, how to get a real return on your investment and how to avoid getting "caught up in free money."
We're honored to feature an interview with Ray LaHood as part of our #InfrastructureCrisis conversation.
Former Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn talks about America's infrastructure crisis and how to not waste this moment.
(Top photo by Oleg Kuzmin)