You got a ‘D’? Well, that’s okay, school’s hard.

Aging steel bridgeIf your children come home with ‘D’ on their report cards, do you ignore it,accept it, because, hey, they look like they’re doing okay? Or do you hit the roof?”

Our transportation infrastructure is not falling apart at the seams, ready to collapse around our ears. And that may be part of the problem. Trying to convince the public that our transportation infrastructure is in dire need of investment and maintenance/repair/upgrade work is hard going when it is not, usually, visibly failing.

But then we get the report card. And we ignore it.,

Some of the people who know most about it are about to confirm that our infrastructure is, in fact, substandard, unable to muster a passing grade. When the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) issues its next report on public facilities in 2013, expect a ‘D’. In its 2009 Report Card, ASCE also awarded (for just the second time) a grade of ‘D’ to America’s infrastructure.

So while a new surface transportation bill looks less and less likely this year, the infrastructure that was once the best in the world, continues to pull in a ‘D’.  And just like you children’s substandard situation, it won’t get better without some changes in attitude and investment.

Check out the upcoming ‘D’ from ASCE and go back and look at 2009 report card.  Then call the Senate/House Conference Committee into your den and read the riot act to them.