Washington, D.C. – On the 5th anniversary of the I-35W bridge collapse, Klobuchar today honored the victims of the tragedy as well as the heroes who put their lives on the line to save others in a speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate. During the speech, Klobuchar highlighted stories of the survivors of the collapse and called for increased investment in the nation’s roads and bridges to prevent a similar disaster from ever happening again.
“As I said on the day following the collapse, a bridge just shouldn’t fall down in the middle of America. But in the days that followed, the whole world watched as our state came together. I was proud to be a Minnesotan,” Klobuchar said. “Five years to the day that the I-35W Bridge fell into the Mississippi River, we have much to do to ensure our 21st century economy has the 21st century infrastructure we need. I am committed to moving forward and addressing our nation’s critical bridge and infrastructure needs and prevent another tragedy.”
Following the collapse of the I-35W bridge, Klobuchar worked with Republican Senator Norm Coleman to secure $250 million in emergency bridge reconstruction funding, and the new bridge was completed in just 339 days. Since then, Klobuchar has worked to improve Minnesota’s infrastructure. The bipartisan Surface Transportation bill that was recently enacted into law includes more than $700 million for Minnesota roads, bridges, transit, congestion mitigation projects, and mobility improvements. Klobuchar also introduced the Rebuild America Jobs Act last year that would have invested $50 billion in our nation’s infrastructure. It also would have created a National Infrastructure Bank to help facilitate public-private partnerships so that projects could be built that would otherwise be too expensive for any one city, county or even state to accomplish on its own.