Diagnosing Bridge Collapse

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New York Times has a nice retrospective video on the “collapse of the I-35W bridge in Minneapolis in 2007 killed 13 people and focused attention on the state of bridges across the nation.” As a native Minnesotan, this event is one of the moments I look back and can easily pinpoint my growing interest in infrastructure, especially, infrastructural decay as a major present and future concern in the US and beyond.

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6 thoughts on “Diagnosing Bridge Collapse

  1. one of the major hurdles (aporias?) in medicine (and therefore in our national politics) is the issue of patient non-compliance, where even after they have been diagnosed with potentially deadly diseases patients refuse (are unable?) to shift their self-destructive habits into potentially reconstructive efforts and I think there is some similar happening in relation to the realm of the civic ‘body’ of infrastructure.

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    • Interesting idea … a little academic for common use, but the idea of “sick bridges” is positively fascinating and a has potential. I would bet a simple set of experiments (like showing pictures of “decrepit” or “sick” bridges followed by a “willingness to invest” battery of questions) could answer that question fairly quick.

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      • maybe a sick polis with a failing part/organ? perhaps there is some slim hope that a broken ‘tool’ like a bridge will come to consciousness or at least can be used as a perspicuous-re-presentation to hit a gestalt-switch in the public? Our local rightwingnut newspaper today is trumpeting citizens in Iowa volunteering to fill potholes, undermining both the work/value/expertise of public employees and no doubt the quality of the roadwork, amateur engineering can’t be far behind…

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  2. Pingback: “Infrastructural Lives: Urban Infrastructure in Context” | Installing (Social) Order

  3. Pingback: End of Year Reflection | Installing (Social) Order

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