in·​fra·​struc·​ture | \ ˈin-frə-ˌstrək-chər How to pronounce infrastructure (audio) , -(ˌ)frä- \

Essential Meaning of infrastructure

: the basic equipment and structures (such as roads and bridges) that are needed for a country, region, or organization to function properly More money is needed to save the crumbling infrastructure of the nation's rural areas. We need to spend more money on maintaining and repairing infrastructure. town/city infrastructures

Full Definition of infrastructure

1 : the system of public works of a country, state, or region also : the resources (such as personnel, buildings, or equipment) required for an activity
2 : the underlying foundation or basic framework (as of a system or organization)
3 : the permanent installations required for military purposes

Other Words from infrastructure

infrastructural \ ˈin-​frə-​ˌstrək-​chə-​rəl How to pronounce infrastructure (audio) , -​ˌstrək-​shrəl How to pronounce infrastructure (audio) , -​(ˌ)frä-​ \ adjective

Did you know?

Infra- means "below;" so the infrastructure is the "underlying structure" of a country and its economy, the fixed installations that it needs in order to function. These include roads, bridges, dams, the water and sewer systems, railways and subways, airports, and harbors. These are generally government-built and publicly owned. Some people also speak about such things as the intellectual infrastructure or the infrastructure of science research, but the meaning of such notions can be extremely vague.

Examples of infrastructure in a Sentence

More money is needed to save the crumbling infrastructure of the nation's rural areas. We need to spend more money on maintaining and repairing infrastructure.
Recent Examples on the Web The current court system infrastructure, inclusive of prosecutor, public defender and judicial offices, is woefully inadequate to adapt to a post-pandemic world that incorporates a heavy focus on technology. Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2021 Human footprint—a measure that includes population density, levels of infrastructure and development, light pollution and the presence of roads—was the factor that inversely correlated most significantly with the number of great apes present. Rachel Nuwer, Scientific American, 17 Nov. 2021 All the while, China has pumped billions into African energy, infrastructure, and other projects that Washington sees as designed to take advantage of developing nations. Matthew Lee,, 17 Nov. 2021 The package, which includes $550 billion in new spending, is meant to repair and enhance the country’s beleaguered infrastructure, which has languished as investment has slowed. Editors, USA TODAY, 16 Nov. 2021 Measures such as electric vehicle infrastructure, food waste reduction grants and the establishment of an Office of Environmental Justice were labeled as a part of a liberal wish list. Laura Schulte, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 Nov. 2021 This reduces the need for EV-charging infrastructure, which is currently limited in China. Trefis Team, Forbes, 12 Nov. 2021 Sinema explains her strategy on infrastructure, spending bills Who has given up seats in the Arizona Legislature in 2021? Mary Jo Pitzl, The Arizona Republic, 12 Nov. 2021 Troiano clarified that export infrastructure—including pipelines and LNG export facilities—fall outside of DOE jurisdiction. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 8 Nov. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'infrastructure.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of infrastructure

1927, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of infrastructure was in 1927

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Last Updated

21 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Infrastructure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

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