Costly projects will be a bargain in 30 years

Letter about investing in the maintenance of public infrastructure.

Editor, The News:

Given the costs these days, I find it hard to wrap my head around the fact that it cost just $126 million to build BC Place back in 1983.  Wow!  A price like that would be a serious bargain today considering we just spent $560 million to give BC Place a major overhaul — nearly 4-1/2 times the original construction cost.

The same applies to all the public infrastructure we benefit from on a daily basis: Roads and bridges, transit systems, hydro dams and the transmission lines that bring power to our homes and businesses.  All of these cost a lot less to build 30 years ago than they would if they were built today.

We could easily balk at the cost to maintain core infrastructure and simply let everything fall into hopeless disrepair. That would certainly save us some cash in the short term.  But in the long term, a strategy like that would only prove to be false economy.  And clearly, the money we spend today to maintain our dams, roads, bridges, and all of the other infrastructure we depend on, will seem like a bargain 30 years from now.

Sandra Robinson

 

Maple Ridge

 

 

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