Posted: 31 August 2001

"The basic equipment, utilities, productive enterprises, installations and services essential for the development, operation and growth of an organization, a city or a nation" (Abrams, Charles, 1971, The Language of Cities: A Glossary of Terms, The Viking Press, New York). The term 'infrastructure' is often used in a more restricted sense to refer to the built facilities that link buildings and human activities - including transport infrastructure, infrastructure for water, sanitation and drainage, power stations, and telecommunications systems. It is sometimes used to include health and educational facilities. The dividing line between infrastructure and services is often unclear - for instance water pipes are generally considered infrastructure but water vendors are not; roads are infrastructure but buses are generally not.