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Blog Posts: Infrastructure

Blog Post Feb 9, 2017

No Free Lunch: The Pros and Cons of Public-Private Partnerships for Infrastructure Financing

The need to improve our nation’s infrastructure is an issue on which many policy makers, at all levels of government and across the political aisle, can agree. Regrettably, the consensus essentially begins and ends with the need to address our nation’s infrastructure. In response, an innovative concept for funding and financing infrastructure investment has gained traction in recent years: public-private partnerships. In this blog post, THP assesses the pros and cons of public-private partnerships. 

Blog Post Apr 24, 2013

U.S. Cities Need Private Spending on Public Works

In his latest Bloomberg View column, Advisory Council member Peter Orszag discusses how to design private-public partnerships for financing infrastructure in the U.S. He highlights a Hamilton Project paper “Public-Private Partnerships to Revamp U.S. Infrastructure” in which Eduardo Engel, Ronald Fischer, and Alexander Galetovic propose a series of best practices for state and local governments to follow when using public–private partnerships to provide infrastructure. The paper also was cited by Michael Deane, Executive Director of the National Association of Water Companies, in a blog post for the Huffington Post on the need for public-private partnerships for the nation’s water infrastructure.

Blog Post Apr 2, 2013

Turning Back to Infrastructure

In a recent blog post for Occupational Health & Safety magazine, Jerry Law writes that many lawmakers and stakeholders “are calling for making major investments to repair America's roads and bridges.” He highlights a recent Hamilton Project paper, “Fix It First, Expand It Second, Reward It Third: A New Strategy for America’s Highways,” in which Matthew Kahn of the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability and David M. Levinson of the University of Minnesota proposed a reorganization of our national highway infrastructure priorities. To read the full piece, click here.

Blog Post Mar 14, 2013

The Democrats’ Exceedingly Timid Budget

In a “Moneybox” post comparing budget proposals released this week by House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan and Senate Democrats, Slate’s Matthew Yglesias discusses The Hamilton Project’s “15 Ways to Rethink the Federal Budget,” which includes pragmatic, evidenced-based proposals that would reduce the deficit and while also bringing broader economic benefits. Yglesias highlights two of the proposals: “The Many Benefits of a Carbon Tax,” by Adele Morris; and “Funding Transportation Infrastructure with User Fees ,” by Tyler Duvall and Jack Basso. To read the full piece, click here.

Blog Post Feb 13, 2013

The Benefits of a ‘Fix it First’ Approach

In last night’s State of the Union address, President Obama proposed a “Fix-it-First” approach to investing in our nation’s ailing infrastructure. This approach recognizes the value of the well-traveled network of roads and bridges that make up our nation’s existing highway system, and prioritizes the maintenance and rehabilitation of our deteriorating system. In “Fix It First, Expand It Second, Reward It Third: A New Strategy for America’s Highways," a paper commissioned by The Hamilton Project at Brookings, authors Matthew Kahn and David Levinson argue that the repair, maintenance, rehabilitation, reconstruction, and enhancement of our existing roads and bridges is the best way to maximize the benefits of infrastructure spending. When first constructed decades ago, the interstate highway system led to economic gains by connecting people and businesses. The full benefits of that system has eroded as roads and bridges have deteriorated, contributing to congestion, longer travel times, increased wear and tear on vehicles, and even accidents. A fix-it-first approach would recoup the value we’re missing from using our current system inefficiently.