Op-eds and Articles

How private investment is saving America’s infrastructure

By / 9.25.2014

On August 3, 2014, the first cars drove the new and much-needed Port of Miami Tunnel. The project broke ground in 2010 and was intended to ease congestion in downtown Miami.

What set this project apart from others is the way it was financed – through a so-called “public-private partnership” (P3) –  in which a consortium of private investors provide financing for projects and are repaid by a state or local government over time.

Traditionally, infrastructure projects have been largely funded by the federal government through grants to states, which in turn pass funding on to localities. Until recently, P3s have largely stayed in the background, accounting for just a small fraction of total infrastructure financing.

But projects like the Port of Miami Tunnel are likely to be more commonplace as cash-strapped governments look for other resources to replace crumbling infrastructure.

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