Skip Navigation

How will Pa. benefit from infrastructure bill?

  • Scott LaMar
Near the junction of the 400 to Buckhead, the 401 highway divides and splits during afternoon rush-hour traffic which slows and builds up so that vehicles and cars back-up as they head home and out of Downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The inner median is coned off during some construction work which slows the traffic even more. Crossing the 5-lane road comes a train of Atlanta's own mass-transit system, the MARTA network and it approaches the overpass with care. We see the infrastructure of a modern metropolis at the busiest time of day when the exodus to get home puts the roads and feeder lanes under the most pressure. Fortunately, the weather is fine with good visibility making drivers' journeys a little shorter and more tolerable but it shows too America��??s habit and dependency on car culture.

 In Pictures Ltd. / Corbis via Getty Images

Near the junction of the 400 to Buckhead, the 401 highway divides and splits during afternoon rush-hour traffic which slows and builds up so that vehicles and cars back-up as they head home and out of Downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The inner median is coned off during some construction work which slows the traffic even more. Crossing the 5-lane road comes a train of Atlanta's own mass-transit system, the MARTA network and it approaches the overpass with care. We see the infrastructure of a modern metropolis at the busiest time of day when the exodus to get home puts the roads and feeder lanes under the most pressure. Fortunately, the weather is fine with good visibility making drivers' journeys a little shorter and more tolerable but it shows too America��??s habit and dependency on car culture.

Airdate: August 26, 2022

Listen to Smart Talk every weekday at 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. on WITF 89.5 & 93.3. You can also stream WITF radio live on our website or ask your smart speaker to “Play WITF Radio.”

Pennsylvania is in line to receive $17.8 billion dollars as part of the $110 billion dollar Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act signed into law by President Joe Biden last November.

Most of that money will go toward upgrading or repairing roads and bridges, but public transportation, safe drinking water, electric vehicle charging stations and expansion of broadband also have been earmarked for funding.

Mitch Landrieu, Senior Adviser to the President and Coordinator of the Infrastructure and Jobs Act and former Mayor of New Orleans joined us on Friday’s Smart Talk where he was asked how much money has gone out so far,”We’ve pushed $110 billion out already to states across the country. And in Pennsylvania, for example, we’ve announced $5.2 billion for 120 specific projects that have been identified.”

Landrieu talked about the areas the bill covers,”Its mission is to help rebuild the roads, the bridges, the airports, the ports and the waterways so that both can get to and from where they going, so we can get the supplies we need from ships, the shells. It’s also designed to make sure that everybody in America has access to high speed Internet. We all know how important that is also to clean up the air and the water. We’ve been reading lots of stories about kids drinking water out of lead pipes that we know is terribly damaging and oil production states like Pennsylvania and, of course, Louisiana. A lot of companies, you know, drilled and left a lot of trash behind. So we have a lot of Superfund sites, brownfield sites, often wells, and then we’re moving into a clean energy economy.”

Pennsylvania will benefit from the expansion of high speed internet but Landrieu says that it mat take awhile,”It takes time to actually dig the road up and layer the fiber optic cable, number one. And number two, as I said, the governors are doing the work, so they have to map out for us where they’re going to put it. So we make sure that they include everybody. So the government is right now across the country are in the process of creating those maps. They’ll get to us hopefully sometime in September or October if we green light on the work will start right away.”

Support for WITF is provided by:

Become a WITF sponsor today »

Up Next
Smart Talk

How can one train a dog, breed dogs, adopt, and pick the right dog for their family?