When it comes to building a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump needs to check his math, according to the MIT Technology Review.
While Trump has estimated the cost for such an endeavor to fall between $8 billion and $12 billion, New America Foundation fellow Konstantin Kakaes said the wall, as described by Trump, would actually cost around $40 billion.
- A 1,000-mile-long, 50-foot-tall wall with a 15-foot foundation, Kakaes said, would cost nearly $9 billion in concrete, $4.6 billion in reinforcing steel and at least $27 billion for labor.
The wall is not the only piece of U.S. infrastructure at play in the 2016 election. The country's aging highways and bridges have been an issue for some time now, and business groups have asked both Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to make them a priority if elected. The coalition of organizations, which includes the Associated General Contractors of America, said they stand at the ready to assist the next president to that end.
As for the candidates, Clinton said she will send her five-year, $275 billion infrastructure plan to Congress within the first 100 days of her administration. Part of her plan, she said, is the creation of a national "infrastructure bank." Although even lighter on details, Trump said he would utilize bonds and invest "at least double" the amount of whatever infrastructure investment Clinton proposed.
A Bloomberg report last month reinforced the idea that necessary infrastructure improvements also can provide economic benefit. Using Denver International Airport as an example, Bloomberg said that a 30-year-old, $2 billion investment in the airport created 270,000 jobs and, to this day, yields an annual $26 billion economic benefit for the area.
Regardless of which candidate wins the election, infrastructure must be a priority. According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, the country currently faces a $1.44 trillion infrastructure funding gap that could grow to $5.18 trillion by 2040 if left unchecked.