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Building Inclusive Infrastructure Part 1

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Infrastructure is meant to benefit every member of society, but it doesn’t always work that way. Professionals in the construction industry face many challenges during the planning and building stage because large-scale projects are inherently disruptive to the common man.

How can we build inclusive infrastructure that considers the needs of every level of society? In part one of this two-part article, our Orlando construction lawyers will examine some of the changes we can implement to build inclusive infrastructure.

Infrastructure and Displacement

Construction projects are usually disruptive, but they affect a small area and only inconvenience a handful of people. On the other hand, major infrastructure projects can affect miles of city and innumerable lives. Building infrastructure can result in long-term or permanent displacement of families living in or around the construction zone.

Over 70,000 people were displaced by various infrastructure projects for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. In 1996, the city of Atlanta demolished 21 out of 22 apartment buildings that represented the fruits of America’s first federally subsidized public housing project to create space for new Olympic facilities. According to the Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions, an estimated 4,000 people were displaced by this portion of the citywide project alone, which doesn’t take into account the other 6,000 public housing residents who were displaced during the time leading up to the Olympics. Rapid gentrification after the closing ceremony of the 1996 Olympics games displaced an additional 24,000 people.

Eliminating Disruptive Construction

In New Delhi, India, an expansive two-year-long infrastructure project leading up to the Commonwealth Games resulted in a city that looked “as if it was under seige” from 2009 to 2011. Critics of the destructive project offered some practical solutions to foster inclusivity in construction. Although the quality of these infrastructure projects was high, and they offered immense utility to the general population after completion, they were disruptive and poorly planned.

Most projects attempted an “all at once” approach to construction, that created a hazardous environment over large portions of the city. Narrow roadways, dug up sidewalks, and loose debris can lead to serious injuries and even death for those living around an infrastructure construction project. A continuous project that operated in smaller areas so as not to disrupt significant portions of the city could lead to ongoing, sustainable construction with markedly less negative feedback.

Building inclusive infrastructure is a challenging task that requires extensive foresight and planning. If you are working on a federally contracted infrastructure project, an Orlando construction lawyer can help you avoid putting innocent lives at risk. In part two, we will examine more ways to build inclusive infrastructure.

If you would like to speak with an Orlando construction lawyer, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.