Texas Tech University

Streamline Infrastructure Reviews? Been There, Done That


June 7, 2017

NRDC - President Trump bragged about "massively streamlining" the approval process for infrastructure projects such as bridges and roads with the Ohio River as a backdrop as steel company executives, labor leaders and local and federal officials looked on.

Mr. President: This is not a new issue, as I know all too well from my work on it over the past 15 years. And there's a lot of policy on the books for addressing it.

But it's easy to scapegoat environmental reviews as the cause of delay or expense.

Never mind that these reviews help boost public involvement in project design, as per the original purpose of these reviews. As Texas Tech Assistant Professor Kristen Moore found in a recent paper examining the work of a communications firm in the Midwestern U.S., in order to engage the public in the review of a large rail project, the company reached more than 1,000 people through activities including public open house events where affected citizens could talk with subject matter experts about their concerns and questions.

Read the story here.