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Unlocking the hidden power of a highway

March 17, 2017

(City Lab) Highways can connect, divide, and they can conquer. In that sense, they're one of the most powerful pieces of infrastructure in the U.S. Yet when Mary Anne Lanier and Harriet Langford examined the 16-mile stretch of highway named after their late father—Ray Anderson, an entrepreneur and pioneer of industrial sustainability—they saw right through to its vulnerabilities.

"We just put the greatest industrialist of the century's name on a dirty highway," Langford, a trustee on the board of the Ray C. Anderson Foundation, said at a Washington, D.C., conference in January. "It didn't feel right." Aside from getting motorists from Georgia to the edge of Alabama, the stretch of Interstate 85 does little else except threaten the surrounding environment—as highways often do...


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