Concrete, steel and fiber-optic cable are the essential building blocks of the economy. Infrastructure enables trade, powers businesses, connects workers to their jobs, creates opportunities for struggling communities and protects the nation from an increasingly unpredictable natural environment. From private investment in telecommunication systems, broadband networks, freight railroads, energy projects and pipelines, to publicly spending on transportation, water, buildings and parks, infrastructure is the backbone of a healthy economy.
It also supports workers, providing millions of jobs each year in building and maintenance. A Brookings Institution analysis Bureau of Labor Statistics data reveals that 14 million people have jobs in fields directly related to infrastructure. From locomotive engineers and electrical power line installers, to truck drivers and airline pilots, to construction laborers and meter readers, infrastructure jobs account for nearly 11 percent of the nationâ€™s workforce, offering employment opportunities that have low barriers of entry and are projected to grow over the next decade.