Prism, November 2021
Urban planners and community advocates have long noted that the interstate highway system was designed to separate and isolate poor Black and brown communities from the economic hearts of their cities. A new measure tucked inside the massive Biden-backed infrastructure bill passed by the House of Representatives on Friday sets out to address this “racist infrastructure” by rebuilding the highways and overpasses that have split these neighborhoods for generations.
Dubbed the Reconnecting Communities Act, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said on Monday that the new plan would mean that some highways and overpasses will be torn down in the coming years. The Department of Transportation will consider local needs as it identifies areas across the country to delegate portions of the $1 billion of funds.