Are Infrastructure Improvements Finally on the Way?
Seasoned truckers know every highway pothole and every deteriorating bridge on their regular routes. While regular drivers may not notice how bad U.S. infrastructure has become, truckers brave the roads enough to see the problem firsthand.
Just how bad is it, exactly? The American Society of Civil Engineers releases a report card every four years, providing an overall grade for U.S. infrastructure as well as scores for each individual category. Overall, America’s infrastructure received a D+. An F would mean the infrastructure is unusable.
Infrastructure is scored on a variety of criteria, including safety, maintenance costs, and more. Bridges received a C+ and roads received a D.
With such a vital part of trucking being in such deplorable condition, it is easy to see why industry officials have been campaigning for years on the matter. Upgraded infrastructure could have great benefits for the trucking industry and the U.S. economy as a whole.
Better infrastructure could mean fewer accidents, less delays, and a lot of saved money. While the Trump administration campaigned on a promise to upgrade infrastructure, trucking has been eagerly waiting for this promise to be fulfilled since the election took place.
Things may finally be getting on track, with the president signing a new executive order designed to improve the permit process for infrastructure. The president claims the change would speed things up without harming the environment.
The Obama Administration beefed up the federal guidelines for issuing permits. Though done in the name of environmental protection, many maintain that it provides too many hindrances and makes it too hard to get things done.
With less bureaucracy in the way, construction will be able to proceed faster and more affordably once projects are put into motion. With a speedier and more streamlined federal licensing arrangement, the infrastructure upgrades can proceed with fewer holdups.
While some officials have cited cost concerns, others have said that a lack of funding hasn’t been the source of delays for infrastructure. Instead, issues with permits have caused the bulk of the problem. With this hindrance poised to be removed, trucking could see the changes its been hoping for sooner rather than later.