Physical Infrastructure

Workers unload containers of shipping company Crowley from a barge after the area was hit by Hurricane Maria at the port in San Juan, Puerto Rico, September 26, 2017

Photo by Alvin Baez/Reuters

Developing and maintaining resilient physical infrastructure is key to transforming Puerto Rico, both economically and socially. Lifeline systems—including energy, water, and transportation—underpin individual and community wellbeing, both as unique systems and in interaction with one another. Hurricane-related damage to these systems, already weakened by deferred maintenance stemming from Puerto Rico’s financial hardships, caused cascading failures across physical infrastructure systems.

Given the likelihood of future natural disasters in the region, Puerto Rico will need to pursue recovery actions focused on both rebuilding and strengthening systems and improving governance of assets. Many of the recovery actions identified by HSOAC, in collaboration with FEMA and other stakeholders, focus on rebuilding physical infrastructure assets to code and using best practices and making systems more resilient to shock. These actions also call for right-sizing infrastructure for Puerto Rico’s current and future population, and for ensuring the capacity to maintain, operate and manage systems effectively in the future.


Public Buildings

Telecommunications and IT