Current transportation challenges in national parks can be grouped around increased park visitation, and a growing backlog of maintenance projects and equipment needs across the 408 park units.
To maintain the roads and bridges now in “good” condition—and successfully protect NPS transportation investments—the NPS must implement an aggressive preventive maintenance program. This would extend the life of these facilities, and ultimately save substantial dollars by avoiding full reconstruction costs. (For more about preventative maintenance on park roads, see the fact sheet: Pavement Preservation Programs.
The NPS transportation system represents a substantial public investment. The estimated replacement value (2012) of all NPS surface transportation assets is $37.7 billion, representing approximately 20 percent of the value of all NPS assets. Unfortunately, historic funding levels have not kept pace with the National Resource Council (NRC) recommendations. A dollar spent today on preventive maintenance can save $3-$5 in the future, so a lack of annual investment in preventative maintenance will only cost more in the long term.