Infrastructure

Major federal bridge grants jump-start long-stalled projects

The Biden administration announced $5 billion to build major bridge replacements, including several grants that were among the largest received by states in their history.

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New Tools Help State and Local Governments Battle Ransomware, Other Big Disasters

When governments find themselves being ransomed, their choices are typically to pay, which will undercut their ability to deliver key services to their communities due to budget restrictions, or not pay, resulting in the immediate inability to serve their communities and the loss of key data that will inevitably plague them for years afterwards.

The nation’s 911 system is on the brink of its own emergency

Federal legislation that could steer billions of dollars into modernizing the patchwork 911 system remains waylaid in Congress.

In an era of dam removal, California is building more

Project boosters claim the dams will be the most environmentally focused dams in California’s history, with water earmarked for environmental purposes and minimum flow requirements for the Sacramento River.

Splash pads make waves across communities, replacing public pools

Observers say public pools are necessary community infrastructure and save lives. Splash pads have become a more affordable option.

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Rough ride? Data bikes chart the condition of bike paths in more cities

The tools that transportation agencies use to record the condition of pavement on roadways don’t work for biking and walking paths, so several communities are rolling out bikes that can get the job done.

Taking a train during a heat wave? Watch out for ‘sun kinks.’

As tracks heat up, they expand and buckle. That's forcing rail operators to adapt as the climate warms.

Zoning reform made way for an explosion of smaller homes in California. Will it work elsewhere?

Encouraged by California’s success, states across the country are passing laws to allow for more accessory dwelling units to address a shortage of affordable homes. But a slew of factors can keep the housing solution from taking off.

FEMA will now consider climate change when it rebuilds after floods

The federal agency is overhauling its disaster rules in a bid to end a cycle of rebuilding in unsafe areas.

High-speed rail needs national direction to get rolling, report says

A New York University professor emphasizes the need to pay attention to the nuts and bolts—or, in this case, the rail profiles and cross ties—of high-speed rail projects to keep costs down and construction on time.

This city in the West made itself drought-proof. Then its dam started leaking.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, and cities across the West rely on fragile water sources—and aging infrastructure.

This housing fix could help build more homes. But firefighters are sounding the alarm.

At the center of the housing debate are building codes, and whether states’ bids to update them to address the affordable housing crises poses safety risks to the individuals they are trying to help.

Pedestrian deaths finally dipped in 2023

A new report shows some progress in improving safety for people traveling by foot, but the number of pedestrian fatalities is still far higher than it was before the pandemic.

Did Supreme Court ruling come too late to reverse ‘chilling effect’ on 2024 disinformation?

While the justices found in Murthy v. Missouri that two states lacked standing to sue over alleged government censorship, observers warned that the case may have already damaged efforts to crack down ahead of November.

Governors seek more say over grid planning process

As states scramble to find reliable sources of electric power amid ever-growing demand for energy, four Democratic governors are seeking more say in their regional electric grid operator's future planning.

Lead water pipes created a health disaster in Flint, but their replacements carry hidden costs

COMMENTARY | Durability and the risk of chemicals being released when pipes heat up are just some of the concerns about plastic pipes.

Biden administration awards $1.8B for urban, rural transportation projects

The more than 145 projects include funding for urban street upgrades, bike and pedestrian improvements, and highway expansions, among other things.

One state is pioneering paying for roof upgrades as storms boost insurance costs

The approach aims to make Alabama a more attractive place to do business. At least five other states are trying to duplicate its roof program.

Platform lets cities, residents shop granny flat options

Like an Etsy for accessory dwelling units, an online platform displays preapproved designs and specs for ADUs, giving local governments a tool for streamlining construction and reducing the housing shortage.