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America's GPA: D+
Estimated Investment Needed by 2020:
$3.6 Trillion


Tennesse Key Facts:

TN2009 Report Card for Tennessee’s Infrastructure

Tennessee’s infrastructure is deteriorating and is in critical need of maintenance and improvement to meet current and future demands. While the condition of Tennessee’s roads, bridges and airports exceeds nationwide scores, Tennessee’s
schools and public park facilities lag behind the rest of the country.
The ASCE Tennessee Section 2009 Infrastructure Report Card is the first comprehensive assessment of the condition of the state’s infrastructure. The
Report Card presents an informed assessment made by the state’s professional engineering community of the condition of the infrastructure critical to our quality of life in Tennessee.
Tennessee’s infrastructure received an overall grade of C with individual grades in nine infrastructure categories. This report card offers guidance to Tennesseans and their leaders about where public works funds would be best spent to improve the overall quality of life.

How is Tennessee’s Infrastructure Doing?


  • Tennessee’s dam safety program has 8 Full-Time Employees that each oversee an average of 83 state regulated dams.
  • Tennessee has 148 high hazard dams.
  • 100% of the state regulated dams in Tennessee have an Emergency Action Plan.
  • Tennessee’s state dam safety program has an annual budget of $368,900.

Drinking Water

  • Tennessee has reported $2.7 billion in drinking water infrastructure needs over the next 20 years.

Hazardous Waste

  • Tennessee has 15 sites on the National Priorities List.


  • Tennessee has approximately 100 miles of levees according to the current FEMA Midterm Levee Inventory.


  • Tennessee has reported $1.4 billion in wastewater infrastructure needs over the next 20 years.


  • There are 81 public-use airports in Tennessee.


  • 1,157 of the 20,058 bridges in Tennessee (5.8%) are considered structurally deficient.
  • 2,645 of the 20,058 bridges in Tennessee (13.2%) are considered functionally obsolete.
  • Tennessee received $48.2 million from the Federal Highway Bridge Fund in FY2011.

Inland Waterways

  • Tennessee has 950 miles of inland waterways, ranking it 11th in the nation.


  • Tennessee’s ports handled 34.1 million short tons of cargo in 2012, ranking it 22nd in the nation.


  • Tennessee has 25 freight railroads covering 2,656 miles across the state, ranking it 27th by mileage.


  • Tennessee has 95,523 miles of public roads.
  • Tennessee has 10,401 miles of major roads, 6% of which are in poor condition.
  • Driving on roads in need of repair costs Tennessee motorists $1 billion a year in extra vehicle repairs and operating costs – $225.34 per motorist.


  • Tennessee has 29 million annual unlinked passenger trips via transit systems – motor bus, heavy rail, light rail, and commuter rail.

Parks and Recreation

  • Tennessee has reported an unmet need of $1.639 billion for its parks system.


  • Public school districts in Tennessee spent a total of $1.6 billion on capital outlays for school construction and acquisition of land and existing structures in fiscal years 2005–2008.
  • It is estimated that Tennessee schools have $3.6 billion in infrastructure funding needs.


  • Tennessee produces 9.125 gigawatt-hours of renewable energy every year, ranking it 8th.
Source: 2013 Report Card for Americas Infrastructure


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