Civil engineers in Idaho released the 2018 Report Card for Idaho’s Infrastructure today, giving the state an overall grade of a “C-.” Idaho is now the fastest growing state in the country, and local and state leaders are being encouraged by ASCE members to proactively prepare the state’s infrastructure for a much larger population. Seven categories of infrastructure were assessed in the 2018 report, and of those seven, two categories were in good condition, three were in mediocre condition, and one was in poor condition. Idaho’s infrastructure ranged from the highest grade of “B-” for energy and wastewater to the lowest grade of “D” for bridges. The last Report Card for Idaho’s Infrastructure was released in 2012 and the state earned a “C-.”
The 2018 Report Card for Idaho’s Infrastructure finds that while Idaho has built some new projects to keep up with growth, other assets are deteriorating and past their useful lives. The bridge stock across Idaho is aging; the state reports needing $2.2 billion to address deterioration and replace existing assets. Additionally, while the Idaho legislature has made strides in identifying funding for the state’s 75,000 lane-miles of highways and roads, available funding is insufficient to meet current and future demands. Over the next 20 years, the state will experience a $3.6 billion shortfall if funding remains stagnant.
In addition to offering an assessment of Idaho’s infrastructure, ASCE members issued recommendations to raise the grades in the 2018 Report Card for Idaho’s Infrastructure. Included in those recommendations are directives to state and local decision-makers to be proactive in the approach to funding, maintaining, and improving infrastructure to meet the ever-increasing need. Additionally, ASCE recommends increasing local infrastructure investment, specifically through passage of local funding initiatives and the promotion of polices aimed at empowering local entities that are prioritizing infrastructure. Third, the Report Card recommends residents and lawmakers focus on critical infrastructure to allow for continued safety of the public. Finally, civil engineers urge citizens of Idaho to take a stand and get engaged with decision-makers to make the case that the built world is critical to the state’s economy and way of life.
ASCE State Infrastructure Report Cards are modeled after the national Infrastructure Report Card, which gave America’s infrastructure a grade of ‘D+’ in 2017. To read the full report and learn more about ASCE Idaho’s solutions to raise the grade, click here.