Dig After Design for Shovel-Ready Infrastructure

Before officials get too excited about using stimulus money to repair the nation's infrastructure, they should carefully consider design, according to this oped.
February 5, 2009, 1pm PST | Nate Berg
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"The U.S. Conference of Mayors has listed 15,221 local infrastructure projects in 641 cities that are "ready to go." But while speed in getting work started and jobs created is clearly key, the importance of good design that will last for generations should not be lost in the haste."

"We need to ensure that the money spent goes to creative, sustainable buildings that will stand the test of time and will still be used by our children and our grandchildren. After all, they are the ones who are going to be paying for these debt-financed projects."

"Perhaps the greatest design opportunity the economic stimulus can give us is for green and sustainable design to become an automatic and essential part of the architecture of new buildings, not just an add-on. In the same way that a bailout for the auto industry presents the prospect to reorient the design of automobiles in a sustainable direction, so is the economic-stimulus package a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reorient our architectural focus toward sustainable design."

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Published on Tuesday, February 3, 2009 in The Orlando Sentinel
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