MADISON, Wis. (WXOW) - The American Society of Civil Engineer's Wisconsin Section gave the state's infrastructure a C grade in their first report card since 2007.
While areas like energy and hazardous waste control received higher marks, the state's roads and bridges are in need of significant investment.
"There's an estimated $13 billion shortfall over the next decade if road improvement projects are not funded," said Ken Mika, PE, M.ASCE, report card committee co-chair.
Mika said inefficient roads cost drivers $6 billion annually due to wear and tear on vehicles, wasted fuel due to congestion, and the overall cost of crashes on roadways.
"Roadway features in Wisconsin are likely factors in approximately one third of fatal traffic crashes," said Mika.
The report collected data from around the state over the past 18 months. Grades were determined based on eight criteria: capacity, condition, funding, future needs, operations & maintenance, public safety, resilience, and innovation.
The 2020 report card used updated criteria to evaluate the state's infrastructure. Report card committee members did not compare 2007's card data to 2020's card due to the different criteria based in each evaluation.
Report card committee member Martin Hanson, PE, F.ASCE said individual regions did not receive their own score since the evaluation focused on the state as a whole. He added that some communities may be further along or further behind with these scores.
The ASCE Wisconsin Chapter's report card committee did offer some solutions to help boost grades and improve the state's infrastructure.
"Wisconsin must increase overall investment across all infrastructure sectors to ensure safe, resilient, and reliable systems to maintain and improve quality of life and economic health of the states residence," said Mika.
Mika added that leadership at the state and federal levels must have targeted discussions and bill consensus to facilitate necessary updates for outdated infrastructure. He called on Congress to reauthorize the Federal Service Transportation Program and creating a stable source of federal funding through a highway trust fund.
New technology and design that help with efficiency also were highlighted as ways to help improve infrastructure. Mika concluded with focusing investments on the state's most outdated and overcapacity infrastructure needs.
- Aviation: C-
- Bridges: C-
- Dams: C-
- Drinking Water: C-
- Energy: B
- Hazardous Waste: B-
- Inland Waterways: C
- Ports: C-
- Roads: D-
- Solid Waste: B-
- Storm water: C
- Transit: D-
- Wastewater: C-