Making Infrastructure Competitive in an Urban World

Publication Type: 
Rae Zimmerman
The infrastructure of the future provides the opportunity for new innovations to meet the constantly changing and diversified needs of cities. Some of the relatively more recent needs are using renewable resources, protecting infrastructure and its users against natural hazards, reducing environmental threats including global warming, enhancing safety and security, and providing an overall high-performing service for infrastructure users. Given that resources to support these additional financial needs and services are limited, this article will examine ways in which cities can address the demands of these new emerging areas synergistically as well as through more traditional investments. In particular, traditional investment areas for upgrading urban infrastructure to meet “state-of-good-repair” benchmarks are presented for energy, transportation, and water as a foundation for conceptualizing how these new demands might alter, yet dovetail with, traditional investment.