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Engineering study gives PA, nation low grades for infrastructure

Written by Craig Layne and Radio Pennsylvania | Mar 25, 2013 4:00 AM
Road construction ahead sign

(Undated) -- An engineering group is calling Pennsylvania one piece of the crumbling puzzle that makes up the nation's infrastructure woes.

The American Society of Civil Engineers' 2013 Report Card gives US roads, rails, dams and other infrastructure a grade of "D+" -- up from a "D" four years ago.

When the study looked at specific states in 2010, Pennsylvania received a "C-" -- largely due to the nearly 60 percent of state roadways rated in either poor or mediocre condition.

Soceity past president Andrew Herman says several ways exist to come up with money for transportation improvements...

"Whether you do it through a gas tax or a user fee, or vehicle miles traveled, we have to make the investment in our roads that if you think back, some of these roads were built in the '40s and the '50s, and now we're not investing in them for us to use today or even our children or our grandchildren in the future."

Herman says 19 percent of the commonwealth's bridges are functionally obsolete.

Nationwide, 13 percent of bridges fall into that category.

He says Pennsylvania drivers spend an average of about $340 per year repairing their cars from damage caused by worn-out roads.

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