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ASCE Releases America’s Infrastructure Report Card

On March 19, 2013, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) released its 2013 Report Card for America's Infrastructure. Updated every four years, the report card rates the condition of the nation's transportation, energy, and water infrastructure and provides individual state profiles. ASCE assigned a cumulative GPA of D+ to the nation's infrastructure, identifying an annual investment gap of $201 billion. This is an improvement over the D the nation received in the 2009 report card. In fact, no infrastructure category saw its grade decline between 2009 and 2013, and grades for bridges, drinking water, roads, solid waste, and wastewater improved modestly.

The 2013 report card assigned Illinois an overall grade of D+. ASCE noted that the state has 2,311 structurally deficient bridges, 201 high-hazard dams, and an estimated 73 percent of roads in what it defines as "poor or mediocre condition." According to ASCE estimates, poor roads inflict $2.4 billion in extra repair costs on Illinois drivers, averaging $292 per motorist. The state faces a combined $32.5 billion in improvements to drinking water and wastewater infrastructure over the next 20 years, as noted in the report card.

In January 2013, ASCE released a related report, "Failure to Act," which estimated a $1.1 trillion infrastructure funding gap by 2020. The funding gap could lead to a cumulative loss of $3.1 trillion in gross domestic product, 3.5 million fewer jobs, and a reduction of $3,100 in annual personal disposable income between now and 2020.