Engineers grade Pennsylvania's infrastructure

Grades not good in engineers' study of Pa.'s infrastructure

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A group of civil engineers has issued a report card that evaluates Pennsylvania's infrastructure, and the grades are not good.

Pennsylvania has the highest percentage of structurally deficient bridges in the country, among other problems, according to the report.

The statewide grades are part of a year-long infrastructure report by the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Sixteen different areas were graded, including drinking water, schools, roads, bridges parks and recreation.

Pennsylvania was given seven D's, including one for roads and bridges, six C's and three B's.

"I think the we are a little better off in the Lehigh Valley," said Joe Gurinko, Lehigh Valley Planning Commission.

The report didn't grade the Lehigh Valley specifically, but Gurinko said work to the 15th and Eight street bridges, along with the soon-to-be-completed American Parkway bridge, shows progress is being made.

"I think the biggest difference with the report card is with the added investment of Act 89, we are able to see big improvements over the next five to 10 years," he added.

Act 89 will add billions of dollars to fix area infrastructure, including one of the region's most notorious routes.

"Some of the big projects we are able to deliver because of Act 89 is the widening of Route 22. It's the biggest and nearest and dearest to everyone's hearts," said Michael Rebert of PennDOT.

The billions coming from Act 89, however, are still not enough to solve the state's infrastructure issues, according to the report.

Locally, Act 89 will add 600 million more dollars to the Lehigh Valley to fix area infrastructure.

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