Infrastructure Groups Build Case to Fix National Parks

Letter to Congress emphasizes job creation and asks for dedicated funding.

national parks

A restroom at Yosemite National Park in California was closed because needed repairs hadn’t been made.

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Organizations that have helped to build our country’s infrastructure have come together to ask Congress to provide dedicated annual funding for a core piece of American heritage: our national parks. More than 180 groups representing engineers, architects, planners, and trade and professional associations are asking lawmakers to provide the funding the National Park Service needs to address $11.6 billion in overdue repairs. 

The organizations sent a letter to lawmakers urging them to address the maintenance backlog, which includes conditions that these groups’ members encounter every day: crumbling roads, collapsed sewer lines, outdated electrical systems, and deteriorating historic buildings. Many of the issues are degrading the visitor experience, and some pose serious safety hazards. 

Investing in park maintenance can restore the affected sites and generate jobs. A Pew-commissioned analysis found that fully addressing the national park maintenance backlog could create or support more than 110,000 jobs.Congress should act now to pass legislation to provide dedicated annual funding for park maintenance. It’s the right thing to do for the parks, the economy, and current and future generations of Americans.

Download the letter here.

Marcia Argust directs The Pew Charitable Trusts' campaign to restore America's parks.

Big Bend, Oregon

A sunset lights up the sky over Big Bend National Park in Texas, which has more than $100 million in needed repairs.

Dean Fikar/iStock

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