The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has just released a preliminary report on the investment gap in surface transportation investment, including transit, between what we’re spending now and what we should be spending.
The ASCE reports that, according to their calculations, the investment gap is $5 trillion in 2019 dollars. The ASCE report was released about the time the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST) was due to expire on September 30. Since then, Congress has extended the FAST Act by one year. The programs from the FAST Act have been in place for five years.
The FAST Act provides funds for road and bridge repair, along with transit infrastructure. The report had this to say about the transit industry: “The future of the transit sector looks bleak, according to the findings. These preliminary findings in the report estimate a current backlog of $176 billion for transit investments, considering the vehicles, facilities and track that are already past their useful lives. That amount is expected to grow to nearly $500 billion through 2039 as existing assets age, and if transit capital investment is maintained at the current real level of funding, The largest gap is in the Mid-Atlantic region and Great Lakes region.”
The report also pointed out that if consumers have to foot the bill for these industry costs, the cost per household could be as high as $12,500 over 20 years, or $625 dollars per year. The situation will get worse during each decade according to the report.
The report also discussed the funding gap for roads. You can read the preliminary findings here. The full report will be released later this year.