Inefficient construction in the U.S.

When it comes to the tech frontier, we are all aware of the fact that the United States might no longer set the innovation benchmark as it once did. This is not necessarily to say that things are going downhill in the innovation department, but that the U.S.’s former leading edge -relative to other nations and tech ecosystems- has somewhat diminished in strength and that other players have caught up –particularly China.

What is surprising, however, is America’s decline in infrastructure construction efficiency. Where the U.S. once built roads and train tracks fast and cheaply, infrastructure projects now take longer to complete and face higher costs. Why did this happen? Noah Smith, in his opinion piece in Bloomberg, provides us with an answer. As it stands, the culprit behind this inefficiency is neither labor costs, nor land acquisition costs, nor factors related to environmental impact reviews or geography. High costs and the subsequently sluggish fund allocations and project developments are simply the result of widespread general inefficiency, such as inefficient regulation and inefficient project management. All this screams for reforms in the system and fund allocation processes. As Noah Smith aptly notes, the “U.S. construction sector is sick”. Whether healing is possible, however, remains uncertain.

Featured post image: Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

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