The numbers on Dallas’ deteriorating streets are grim, and anecdotal evidence from drivers paints an even more dire picture, of tires blown out and tongues accidentally bit on especially bumpy roads. It often seems we’re only a few weeks of infrastructure decline away from seeing potholes that swallow beloved family pets and belch out clouds of subterranean gas.
But our bridges, at least compared to the rest of the country, aren’t in terrible shape. They’re still not great, though: of the nearly 3,000 bridges in Dallas County, 17 are considered structurally deficient, and 941 are functionally obsolete. This is according to data from the 2015 National Bridge Inventory, compiled by the Federal Highway Administration and packaged in a user-friendly interactive feature by The Washington Post.
Per The Post:
Trump campaigned on a $1 trillion infrastructure plan that includes fixing the nation’s bridges. There are more than 130,000 structurally deficient and functionally obsolete bridges in the country. See if any sub-standard bridges are in your neighborhood:
We did see, and here’s what we found.
Of the 2,966 classified bridges in Dallas County, 0.6 percent are considered structurally deficient, which stacks up OK against the national average of 9.6 percent. More than 25 percent, however, are given the less severe rating of “functionally obsolete,” which the Post describes as a bridge that “cannot handle the required traffic needs.”
It should be said that being structurally deficient does not mean collapse is imminent, or that the bridge is unsafe, only that it is in need of repairs. It should also be said that at least some of this is out of date. The Sylvan Avenue Bridge and the Houston Viaduct from downtown to Oak Cliff, each qualified as structurally deficient here, have been recently repaired and revamped.
Regardless, the numbers are alarming at both a local and national level. You can look for yourself and hone in on any particular bridge by going here.