We need more trains. Video shows why it's so expensive to build them in America.
We're the sixth most expensive place to build rail transit in the world.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, heavy rail transit such as subways and metros produce 76% fewer greenhouse gas emissions per passenger mile than an average single-occupancy vehicle. That makes them one of the most essential tools for fighting climate change.
However, according to a new report from CNBC, the United States is the sixth most expensive country worldwide for building rail transit.
In 2021, President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan infrastructure law that included the country's most significant investment in public transportation. According to CNBC, the U.S. is expected to spend between $91 billion and $108 billion on local public transit through 2026. With all that money at stake, using it effectively will be key.
“I believe that with the money coming in from infrastructure, it’s going to help us rebuild American transit,” Carmen Bianco, former President of MTA New York City Transit, told CNBC.
However, building infrastructure in the U.S., especially subways, is very expensive. This CNBC report shows that building subways in the U.S. is more expensive than in most countries because of high labor costs, overbuilt tracks and stations, and onerous regulations.
Fortunately, the video doesn’t just point out the problems with building infrastructure; it also provides solutions. Prices can be cut if Americans move away from building infrastructure with flashy designs, work with quieter equipment that allows them to build during a greater range of hours and cut down the red tape by using more state workers rather than contractors.
At a time when building trains is more important than ever, the smarter we work, the greener our future will be.