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TACIR: Tennessee needs $62.9B in public infrastructure by 2026


Tennessee needs at least $62.9 billion worth of public infrastructure improvements by 2026 – an increase of $1.2 billion or 2% from last year – according to a new report by the Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations (TACIR). 

This marks the seventh year in a row that infrastructure needs increased for transportation and utilities, which continues to be the largest category in the inventory. Transportation and utilities needs are estimated by TACIR at $35.2 billion, a $750 million increase from last year, and comprises 56.1% of the overall inventor.  

The cost of existing road projects sits at $1.1 billion while new road projects will cost $405, offset by $752 million in completed road projects. The largest increase in transportation needs for an individual project is the $155 million Concourse A at Nashville International Airport while the largest new transportation project is the airport’s Concourse D, costing $245 million.  

Another major contributor to the overall increase in infrastructure needs for the state include the $669 million for Health, Safety, and Welfare infrastructure. Most of this $305 million increase is from the $373 million in needed improvements for water and wastewater. 

General government expenditures saw the third biggest increase in needs ($83 million) followed by $15 million in recreation and culture. Reported needs only decreased in two categories: education ($259 million) and economic development ($37 million). 

Information about funding for public infrastructure needs reported by officials indicates that 67.8% of the funds required to meet those needs was not available at the time the inventory was conducted—this was relatively unchanged from last year’s 67.5%.  Excluding improvements needed at existing schools and those drawn from capital budget requests submitted by state agencies—neither of which includes funding information—only $15.4 billion in funding is available for the remaining $47.6 billion in needs.    

Total estimated costs for current infrastructure needs fall into six general categories:    

  • Transportation and Utilities:  $35.2 billion  
  • Education:  $14.8 billion  
  •  Health, Safety, and Welfare:  $8.9 billion  
  • Recreation and Culture:  $2.3 billion  
  • General Government:  $1.3 billion  
  •  Economic Development:  $246 million  

For each county, the report includes one-page summaries, which list the estimated cost for all types of needed infrastructure in each county by stage of development, highlight the top three types of infrastructure improvements needed in each county based on the total estimated cost, and provide comparisons of the infrastructure needed at public school systems to student enrollment.  

The full report is available on TACIR’s web site