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PVC Pipe: A Solution for Michigan’s Aging Infrastructure

Jan 2018

Michigan will need to spend at least $4 billion annually for decades to address the state’s roads, bridges, water and sewer systems, and communications infrastructure. According to the 21st Century Infrastructure Commission, Michigan needs $16 billion over the next 20 years for water and sewer maintenance alone.

Other water infrastructure needs include:

  • $500 million over the next 20 years for water and sewer emergency response
  • $4.5 billion for school drinking water testing and remediation planning
  • $200 million over the next 20 years for rural drinking water and wastewater infrastructure

Some look a Flint as the poster child for failed water infrastructure; however, it’s an increasing problem throughout Michigan. In Oakland County, for example, a water main break left over 300,000 people without safe drinking water. Macomb County, meanwhile, is just recovering from a collapsed sewer line a year ago. And heavy rains have resulted in multiple instances of flooding along Detroit’s freeways (resulting in both traffic headaches and sewage backups).

Think that’s costly? Take a look at the bigger picture.

The lack of attention to our aging infrastructure is costing the United States. Failure to Act: Closing the Infrastructure Gap for America’s Economic Future estimates that delaying infrastructure repairs could have a nearly $4 trillion impact on gross domestic product by 2025. This translates to loses for both U.S. businesses and American households.

PVC pipe can help.

PVC pipe contributes to water conservation and saves money for municipalities and state governments across the nation. In fact, there are more than one million miles of PVC water mains in service across North America. In Michigan, for example, the City of Burton chose PVC pipe to replace 19 miles of water infrastructure at more than $2.2 million in savings.