Transportation
2:30 pm
Tue April 29, 2014

Report looks at condition of bridges in Nebraska

A new report finds 18 percent of bridges in Nebraska are structurally deficient.

The report from the American Road and Transportation Builders Association or ARTBA was released last week. It’s based on federal data from the 2013 National Bridge Inventory database. The report defines a structurally deficient bridge as one with key elements, such as the deck or superstructure, in poor condition or worse.

ARTBA Chief Economist Alison Black, the report’s author, says factors such as weather and investment in maintenance contribute to that rating.

"I think nationwide, our concern certainly is that we’ve had a situation of chronic under-investment in our nation’s infrastructure, particularly highways and bridges is what we’ve been focusing on, and bridges in this report, obviously. But citizens should be concerned about investing enough to really make a difference enough in repairing some of these structures."

The ARTBA report says seven percent of all bridges in Nebraska are classified as “structurally obsolete.” That means they don’t meet current design standards.

In Iowa, 21 percent of all bridges are classified as structurally deficient.

The full report, along with state statistics, are available at www.artba.org.