In June, National Public Radio launched a new series titled America's Crumbling Infrastructure. Judith Rodin, President of the Rockefeller Foundation and Robert Fishman, planning historian and professor at the University of Michigan were interviewed. Rodin suggested that the philanthropic world will bring together key stakeholders and fund new ideas to improve the nation's infrastructure. Fishman discussed the impact national planning has had, and will have, dating as far back as our founding fathers in the growth and development of the nation. The vision for the 21st century, according to Fishman, is sustainability - our ability to adjust to conditions in the future.
June 29th: Armando Carbonell, Chairman of the Department of Planning and Urban Form at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy was interviewed on NPR's new series, America's Crumbling Infrastructure. Carbonell addressed the question: Are Megaregions the future of Transportation? He replied that this country needs a national vision and an integrated strategy that is informed by regional differences. Megaregions offer the right scale for making infrastructure investments, such as high-speed rail. Carbonell also stated that higher energy prices and climate change will alter the lifestyle of the American public.
Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell was also interviewed on the series, and addressed the question: who will pay to fix our crumbling infrastructure? Rendell, along with NYC Mayor Bloomberg and California Governor Schwarzenegger started the "Building America's Future" coalition, which aims to achieve an economically viable future by getting into the business of fixing our infrastructure. We have a $1.6 trillion backlog to bring our existing infrastructure to a state of good repair. The top priority is bridges, followed by clean and waste water management. But to do this, emphasized Rendell, we need federal assistance and leadership. Referring to our history of national planning, Rendell states that we can keep up the legacy of our founding fathers, but we just need the will to get things done, and the federal government to step up to the plate.