The grades are in, and they’re not great. On Wednesday, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) released their quadrennial Infrastructure Report Card. America’s infrastructure earned an overall grade of C-minus. While this is a minor improvement over 2017’s Infrastructure Report card, which revealed a dismal grade of D-plus, there’s still a lot of work to be done.
The report card assigns grades to 17 categories of American infrastructure. A staggering 11 out of these 17 categories received a grade in the “D” range, including Roads, Stormwater, Dams, and Levees. This means that the civil engineers who evaluated these categories determined that the infrastructure is “poor, at risk.” According to the report card, this means,
“The infrastructure is in poor to fair condition and mostly below standard, with many elements approaching the end of their service life. A large portion of the system exhibits significant deterioration. Condition and capacity are of serious concern with strong risk of failure.”
These systems are critical to the overall health and wellbeing of our communities, and vital to commerce and economic stability at local, regional, and national levels.
Solutions to Improve America’s Infrastructure Grade
The ASCE identifies three major factors when exploring how to raise the grade of these crucial infrastructure systems: Leadership & Action, Investment, and Resilience. All three are required to ensure our infrastructure can withstand or quickly recover from natural or man-made hazards.
President Biden proposed a $2 trillion climate-focused infrastructure plan that would focus spending on a US green energy infrastructure overhaul, new road and bridge construction, and expanding broadband access.
This type of investment is vital to the improvement of infrastructure reliability and environmental quality for communities across the nation. To make the most of this investment, we need to explore sustainable solutions that will provide a solid foundation and deliver long-term, resilient results.
Geosynthetics for Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure
The future success of many infrastructure projects depends on the strength of the underlying soil. Through an interconnected honeycomb-like network, 3D geocells confine and stabilize soils that would otherwise be unstable under loading. The GEOWEB® 3D Soil Stabilization System is the industry’s most complete geocell system, designed with fully engineered components to withstand the most challenging site conditions. These components are built for strength, durability, speed of installation, and long-term performance.
GEOWEB geocells can be used for shallow ground improvement and mitigation of geotechnical risks, thereby offering a unique solution toward improving infrastructure resilience. The GEOWEB system can also be used to protect the natural environment by providing robust protection against erosion, sustainable stormwater management solutions, as well as green slopes and retaining walls.
The engineering team at Presto Geosystems works closely with civil engineers, offering free project evaluation services and on-site support for load support, slope stabilization, channel protection, and retaining wall applications.
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