Michigan earns a D+ on infrastructure on latest civil engineering report card

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FLINT (WJRT) (03/06/2018) - A new report is out giving Michigan a D+ for its infrastructure. And while the grade isn't a total fail, it's not good either.

It means overall, conditions are poor and only getting worse.

The report card, compiled by Michigan's "American Society of Civil Engineers" looks at 13 categories including roads, bridges, and drinking water.

Michigan, with an overall grade of D+, ranks among the worst of the 27 states issued updated reports cards.

"They gave the whole state a D," asked David Montgomery, "wow."

Montgomery, a transporter, drives the entire state for a living.

"Some areas are smooth sailing, some roads are real bad," he noted.

He was surprised to learn the entire state's grade for roads is a D-

"Well they got to get it together," he said.

"I think as far as roads, we should get an "E"," said another driver we spoke with Tuesday night. "Our roads are horrible."

She didn't hold back:

"You can go in a pothole, and you might not make it out," she added.

Recommendations to raise the grade include providing sustainable funding for roads, reviewing the 'life cycle' costs of roads to prioritize maintenance and rehabilitation, and implementing a mileage-based user fee for freight.

The report card also gives the state a D for its Drinking Water.

"That's surprising because I thought Michigan had the freshest water because of all the bodies of water we're surrounded by, " said Saginaw resident Moses Canales.

According to the report. while Michigan is nearly surrounded by the Great Lakes, which contain 21% of the world's fresh water, certain drinking water systems face scarcity concerns, contamination, and aging treatment/distribution systems.

Flint residents, who are still struggling with the Flint water crisis, have differing views on the city's efforts to replace its lead or galvanized pipes:

"They going as fast as they can, they moving along, they moving along," said Montgomery.

"On my side of town no I haven't seen one pipe replacement being done, " said Charese Johnson, "...I have a son, we bathe him in boiled water."

For recommendations to raise the grade on Drinking Water as well as the 11 other categories listed in the report just click on the link to the left of this story.

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