The Urban Land Institute recommends merit- rather than formula-based models for allocating federal funding to state and local governments, citing the TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) competitive grant program created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 as an ideal model.
Infrastructure 2010: An Investment Imperative measures U.S. investment in water and transportation systems against those being built overseas.
The global nonprofit organization supports establishing a National Infrastructure Bank modeled on the 51-year-old European Investment Bank (EIB), which finances $64 billion in projects annually across the continent. The report criticizes Congress for not taking the concept seriously even though the model spurs long-term public-private partnerships and few EIB projects have defaulted.
It also recommends raising revenues through user fees to pay for upgrades and to encourage citizens to drive less, conserve more water, and use less energy.
The report recommends legislative and policy changes to address water issues in 14 metropolitan areas including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, and New York.