Data Visualization Bridges in the U.S.

Published on May 11th, 2016 | by Elaine Ding

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Mapping the Declining State of Bridges in the United States

Jonah Adkins, a cartographer and geographic information systems consultant, has created Bridges of America, a data visualization illustrating the usage and structural health of the 600,000 bridges in the United States. Bridges of America uses data from the Federal Highway Administration’s National Bridge Inventory, which logs bridge conditions dating back to 1992, and allows users to examine bridges by daily traffic count and their health, as broken down into the categories: “ok,” “functionally obsolete” (meaning the bridge does not meet modern standards but may be in good health), and “structurally deficient” (meaning the bridge requires significant repair or even replacement). As of 2013, this data shows that 10 percent of U.S. bridges qualify as “structurally deficient.”

Take a look.

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About the Author

Elaine Ding

Elaine Ding is a graduate policy fellow at the Center for Data Innovation. She is a graduate from the American University Washington College of Law and is currently finishing her Master of Public Administration degree. Elaine previously worked as a legal fellow for IDEATE Labs conducting legal and policy research on a wide variety of issues including education, healthcare, telecommunications, and workforce policy.



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