Investors Eye Airports, Bridges, Roads

Subprime-weary banks earmark $250B for infrastructure projects
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Aug 27, 2008 10:56 AM CDT
Florida toll roads are drawing interest from investors.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Weary of investments infected by the subprime contagion, investors are looking to purchase and operate some more substantial assets: the nation’s bridges, toll roads, and airports, reports the New York Times. Goldman Sachs, KKR, Morgan Stanley, and Credit Suisse are among those who have stockpiled some $250 billion for infrastructure projects, and public officials, beset by budget woes, increasingly are opening their arms to them.

While public opposition has been strong in the past, the continued deterioration of roads and bridges—one group estimates that at least $1.6 trillion is needed over the next 5 years—may prompt a sea change. And if the public doesn't come around soon enough, investors will take what one calls "a boatload of capital" overseas. “Ten to 20 years from now infrastructure could be larger than real estate,” predicts JPMorgan's head of infrastructure investments.