i35 bridge collapse
The White House has put together a list of 50 infrastructure projects that would cost $137.5 billion. Above, the Interstate 35 bridge across the Mississippi River in Minneapolis collapsed Aug. 2, 2007. Joshua Lott /Reuters

The White House has put together a list of 50 infrastructure projects totaling at least $137.5 billion to be funded by public-private partnerships, McClatchy newspapers reported Monday. But the plan covers only a fraction of what the country needs.

The list closely resembles one circulated at the National Governors Association meeting in December, the Kansas City Star and the News Tribune reported.

President Donald Trump promised during the election campaign he would seek to upgrade the nation’s infrastructure to create jobs. The projects on the Emergency & National Security Projects list contains mostly rail, highway and airport projects, the report said.

“We will build new roads, and highways, and bridges, and airports, and tunnels, and railways all across our wonderful nation,” Trump vowed in his inaugural address.

The last report card issued by the American Society of Civil Engineers estimated it would take $3.6 trillion to upgrade the nation’s infrastructure by 2020. The 2013 assessment gave the current infrastructure a D-plus, with levees and waterways getting the lowest grades. A new report card is due out this year.

Robert Puentes, director of the Metropolitan Infrastructure Initiative at the Brookings Institution, told U.S. News & World Report Congress has been doing the minimum to maintain roads bridges and public transit. He said it’s largely up to local and state governments to make any upgrades.

Senate Democrats Tuesday unveiled a $1 trillion plan to rebuild the nation’s roads, railways, airports, waterways and sewer systems over the next decade. Former President Barack Obama pushed for infrastructure improvements throughout his presidency but Republicans rejected the proposals, saying the federal government just couldn’t afford it.

Six most expensive projects on the White House list:

  • The most expensive project on the White House list is the expansion of New York’s Second Avenue Subway at a cost of $14.2 billion, creating 16,000 jobs.
  • The reconstruction of the Northeast Corridor rail infrastructure between New York City and Newark, New Jersey, would cost of $12 billion. The proposal estimates 15,000 direct jobs and 19,000 indirect jobs would be created.
  • The high-speed Texas Central Railway would run between Houston and Dallas, about 240 miles, reducing travel time to 90 minutes. The proposed $12 billion project would operate trains every 30 minutes during peak periods and hourly during off-peak hours, creating 40,000 jobs.
  • The NextGen Air Traffic Control System would replace outdated radar systems with satellite systems to increase air traffic capacity by 50 percent and reduce flight times. The project would cost $10 billion and create 2,300 jobs.
  • Modernization of Union Station in Washington would cost $8.7 billion and produce 16,000 jobs.
  • Also on the list are 15 Interstate 95 bridges in Philadelphia deemed structurally deficient. It would cost $8 billion to fix them, creating 15,800 jobs.