Recently the City of San Diego, California has realized that her infrastructure needs some serious attention.
Stormwater is their major area of an issue because they need $700 million more than they have to fix their Stormwater infrastructure over the next five years.
The city has seemingly ignored the problems for quite some time and as a result, they do not have the funds available nor any immediate way of obtaining them.
The Voice of San Diego reports the situation with an air of frustration at the city officials for letting the problems get this out of hand.
“Water and sewer officials are soon going to be proposing rate increases to pay for these fixes, city public works officials told me. They also told me they expect these rate increases will be approved because they’ve always been in the past. Rate increases don’t require a public vote and they’ve gone through with barely any protest in recent years. Water rates have already gone up 7.5 percent in each of the last two years. Also looming is the recently approved $2.5 billion plan to recycle San Diego’s sewage into drinking water. No one has figured out how to pay for that, either.”
Could this have been avoided and what is the best way forward for San Diego City?
Like many cities, San Diego is facing a range of expensive infrastructure projects coming on stream in the next decade.
As the Voice of San Diego notes prioritizing those projects against each other, and getting political and community agreement for funding of projects will be major issues that need to be resolved.
Using infrastructure management practices to…
- determine the future desired level of service for a city, across a range of services and networks;
- making allowance for future changes in demand (growth, decline, technological changes, environmental changes);
- analyzing risks associated with infrastructure projects, infrastructure renewals, and backlogs;
- developing longer-term infrastructure expenditure and funding profiles;
…will assist cities and municipalities to understand, manage, and explain these infrastructure asset management issues.
PHOTO CREDIT: Millionaire’s Row by Justin Brown