With aging pipes, frequent main breaks and tremendous costs of repairs and renovations, deteriorating water infrastructure is one of the most critical problems facing municipalities today.

There are an estimated 240,000 drinking water main breaks per year in the U.S, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). The group gave the nation’s drinking water infrastructure a “D” grade in its 2013 report card.

The ASCE also gave the country’s stormwater and wastewater infrastructure a “D” grade, and estimated $298 billion will be needed over the next 20 years to keep the system from crumbling.

The American Water Works Association warns that the majority of the pipes that make up our water infrastructure are nearing the ends of their useful lives. Assuming that every pipe needs replacement, the cost in the coming decades could easily reach $1 trillion.

However, some municipalities are facing the problem head-on. According to Govalytics data, the municipalities spending the most on capital projects related to water infrastructure include:

Municipality Project Name Total Expenditure
Seattle Water Infrastructre Service Renewal $36,096,000
Santa Ana, Calif. Water Infrastructure Improvements $30,400,000
Fairfax County, Va. Conveyance System Rehabilitation $27,500,000
Garland, Texas Relocation of Mains $10,789,277
Hollywood, Fla. Stormwater Infrastructure Program $4,674,500

Govalytics, is a sales and marketing tool for companies looking to contract with local governments, measures municipal spending in the nation’s top 25 MSAs.

MSAs, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, are cities and their metro (or micro) areas. “A metro area contains a core urban area of 50,000 or more population, and a micro area contains an urban core of at least 10,000 (but less than 50,000) population. Each metro or micro area consists of one or more counties and includes the counties containing the core urban area, as well as any adjacent counties that have a high degree of social and economic integration (as measured by commuting to work) with the urban core.”

For more information on these projects, or to see how Govalytics can help your agency as a benchmarking tool, visit the website.

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