All nations, if they are to be modern economies, require robust infrastructure that meets the needs of their age and time; during the industrial age, factories needed to be built, and roads to be maintained in cities to be constructed with the necessary infrastructure for manufacturing cities.
In the 18th and 19th centuries, England built sophisticated Riverway networks and locks throughout the country to transport coal, steel and other goods for manufacturing; this process repeated itself around the globe.
The United States has such poor infrastructure due to the period it began industrialisation in the late 19th and early 20th century. New technology was developed, including the internal combustion engine; for example, England and Europe invested their resources in the train, rivers and locks.
America chose to invest in the automobile and not trains, rivers that were predominant in the old world.
To get to the heart of America’s poor infrastructure, we must be aware of the Federal Highway Act of 1956, which aimed to build a country system of Interstate highways throughout the USA.
This highway project is one of the main reasons American infrastructure is poorly designed. The Federal Highway Act cost the United States $571 billion, and this funding primarily went to construct highways and parking spaces.
This means that American cities and suburbs are not designed with alternative public transport in mind; the United States is very much the nation of the automobile; to get to work, get groceries and move around, you must have a vehicle.
With the rise of fear of global warming and governments wanting to cut down emissions, the way American infrastructure is designed is so that it will be costly to redesign the way cities have been built for nearly a hundred years.
The United States, from the creation of the Federal Highway Act of 1956, have added nearly 50,000 miles of road or 80,000 km of road, which had over a million Americans displaced due to road construction; this burden mainly fell upon minorities within the USA.
Discrimination and Infrastructure
The United States Housing Association Agency historically has subsidised housing construction, and during the time of discrimination and the United States, new houses being built were only four white families.
During this period, the US government marked African-American areas in red, showing that they were too risky to be insurable for mortgages.
After World War II, the Veteran Association funded housing for ex-white soldiers but not for other ethnic minorities.
In the 21st century, discrimination of the past no longer happens due to the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s and the wins to end discrimination against African Americans.
The old development model left a massive infrastructure problem within the United States. Of the 138 million homes within the US, 68% of these are single-family houses, and due to single-family zoning, many neighbourhoods are primarily made up of urban areas.
Due to this design layout, most US citizens not living in major cities to get groceries and other essentials require an internal combustion engine or an electric vehicle.
America, the national transport is the car United States has 5% of its land mass dedicated to car parking spaces, leaving eight parking spaces for each vehicle within the United States.
The National Car Ownership Statistics states that 278,063,737 personal and commercial vehicles were registered to drivers in the U.S. in 2021. The number of registered vehicles in the United States increased by 3.66% between 2017 and 2021, indicating an upward trend in car ownership.
This means there are 2,224,509.896 car spaces within the United States of America; one positive of this is that 99% of car parking spaces within America are free.
Forbes Car Ownership Statistics 2023 link
The Guardian The hidden climate costs of America’s free parking spaces link
Vox Why free parking is bad for everyone link
OBF The Hidden Truths of America’s Bad Design link
Social Media and Other Links
LinkedIn Link https://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathan-riley-b463881b4/
Blog Link https://renaissancehumanism.co.uk/
Anchor Link https://anchor.fm/renaissancehumanism
My Amazon author page https://www.amazon.com/author/jonathan1997
My Twitter https://twitter.com/Jonathan5080549
My Medium link jonathanrileywriter.medium.com