Publication Date

January 1986

Journal or Book Title

Journal of Rural Studies


This paper describes the importance of understanding and dealing with the problems of infrastructure planning and maintenance in rural communities. Infrastructure is defined to include roads, bridges, water and wastewater collection and treatment systems, and public buildings and capital equipment. The authors base their findings primarily on the experience of communities in Massachusetts, but these findings are readily applied to the situation of rural communities elsewhere in the U.S.A. and other developed countries. Three major conclusions are presented in the paper: the need for rural communities to develop long-range plans for infrastructure maintenance and finance; the need to develop effective local institutions to assume this responsibility, and the importance of managing growth in fast-growing rural areas in order to minimize the need for major expansion of infrastructure systems.


This article was reprinted with permission from Elsevier.