This Brookings article looks at public-private partnerships for infrastructure in the United States. “Public-private partnerships are unique because of the ongoing collaboration between governments and private contractors, as well as the wide range of options that exist for structuring PPPs. In one type of PPP, a single firm may take responsibility for all phases of an infrastructure project (including design, construction, finance, operation, and maintenance). In other cases, a firm may only take on the two phases of design and construction. Regardless, the firm will receive revenues from user fees or ‘availability payments’ paid by the government. It is important to note that there is no ‘free lunch’ when it comes to PPPs: the cost of an infrastructure project must eventually be paid, either by the taxpayer or the consumer. When firms are offering to pay the upfront costs of infrastructure investments, it can be easy to lose sight of this reality,” the authors write.