'A catastrophe waiting to happen' - Experts say U.S. in need of critical infrastructure repairs
Aging bridges. Pothole-plagued roads. Swamped sewers. America's infrastructure needs significant repairs, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers.
The ASCE finds that nationwide, 43 percent of our roadways are in poor or mediocre condition, including 27% in New York, 34% in Connecticut and 37% in New Jersey. In addition to that, 42% of all of our bridges are at least 50 years old and more than 46,000 are considered structurally deficient.
COMPLETE COVERAGE: Data and vintage Library of Congress videos
"I think we have neglected and disregarded these challenges because it was easier to put it off, procrastinate, delay. We can't do it anymore," says Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Connecticut).
“It’s a catastrophe waiting to happen,” Sen. Blumenthal adds.
But even though Congress passed a $1.2 trillion dollar bipartisan infrastructure bill, critics say lawmakers must do more than simply throw money at the problem.
"To build and maintain infrastructure, you need three things. Money, vision, and willpower," says George Marlin, former CEO and Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
"What you need is a governor or a mayor to appoint a visionary who is above politics."
Joseph Sabia, who has owned and operated Sabia's Car Care for nearly 50 years, blames elected leaders for the current state of our roads.
"Our infrastructure here is falling apart and the politicians just keep kicking the can down the road," Sabia says.
And while a pothole-plagued road may lead to more customers, Sabia says he would prefer that his neighbors and friends have the opportunity to drive on smooth and safe surfaces.
"It brings heartache, not business. You don't want that type of business."