TRANSPORTATION FOR AMERICA
One in nine bridges remains structurally deficient.
Every day, millions of people from all walks of life in cities and towns large and small travel over one of our country’s 66,405 structurally deficient bridges — more than one in nine (11 percent) of all bridges. Structurally deficient bridges are those that require significant maintenance, rehabilitation or replacement.
We take 260 million trips over deficient bridges each day. In our 100 largest metropolitan areas alone, there are more structurally deficient bridges than there are McDonald’s restaurants in the entire country. Laid end to end, all the country’s deficient bridges would span from Washington, DC to Denver, Colorado — more than 1,500 miles. (Or farther than from Canada to Mexico.)
While most bridges are designed to last 50 years before major overhaul or replacement, the average age of an American bridge is well past middle age at 43 years.
Not surprisingly, age takes a toll. Structurally deficient bridges are 65 years old on average — more than 22 years older than all bridges. Herein lies a glimpse of the future fix we’re in for: In just 10 years, one in four bridges (170,000) will be over 65, an age at which it’s far more likely that a bridge will be deficient.
About Transportation for America
“Transportation for America is: bringing together the most diverse coalition anywhere, eager to reform how we spend transportation dollars at the federal, state and local level to create a safer, cleaner and smarter transportation system that works for everyone. We believe: That it is past time for a bold new vision — transportation that guarantees our freedom to move however we choose and leads to a stronger economy, greater energy security, cleaner environment and a healthier America. Through our comprehensive work on Capitol Hill; our local events and partnerships across the country; unparalleled research, reports and data; and strong presence in the media; we have helped to change the conversation around how we spend our precious tax dollars on transportation for decades to come.”