An independent commission should be set up "to end decades of drift and delay on major infrastructure decisions", a Labour Party-commissioned report has said.
There has been a lack of long-term strategic planning, with successive governments failing to set priorities based on future needs, the report from Olympic Delivery Authority chairman Sir John Armitt found.
Major infrastructure projects "are often controversial and politicians are rarely in office long enough to see the electoral dividends of major investment programmes" the report added.
Problems surrounding the planning and implementing of schemes had affected energy policy, airport capacity, road and rail schemes and water projects.
The report went on: "The Office for National Statistics, for example, forecasts UK population will grow to over 73 million people by 2035.
"However, there is little evidence that governments are planning for the infrastructure we will need by then to support another 10 million people."
Commissioned by Labour leader Ed Miliband and shadow chancellor Ed Balls last year, the report called for a new independent National Infrastructure Commission to be established.
The commission - appointed by government and opposition parties - would identify the UK's long-term infrastructure needs and monitor the plans developed by governments to meet them.
The Commission would consider how the UK's future needs could be met in a targeted and efficient manner with value for money being a primary consideration.
The report said a new approach was needed to prepare the country for the major challenges ahead, such as population growth and climate change.
The report made recommendations aimed at achieving cross-party political consensus, public support and investor certainty for long-term decisions on the UK's energy, transport, water, waste, flood defences and telecommunications needs.
It called for:
A new independent National Infrastructure Commission to look 25-30 years ahead at the evidence for the UK's future needs across all significant national infrastructure and set clear priorities, for example, nationwide flood prevention or energy supply;
This national infrastructure assessment would be carried out every 10 years;
:: Within 12 months of this vote, government departments would have to form detailed 10-year sector plans of how they would deliver and fund work towards these priorities;
Parliament would then vote on these 10-year plans and the commission would scrutinise the ability of these plans to meet the 25-30 year national priorities and report to Parliament annually on their delivery.
"An infrastructure fit for the future must now be a national priority alongside education and health and a new independent National Infrastructure Commission is a way of delivering this improvement with the vital support of the public and politicians of all parties."
He went on: "London 2012 proved we are capable of planning and delivering complex and innovative infrastructure projects with local and national cross-party support.
"We did it right for the Games and now we need to apply the lessons we've learned to other areas and services we need to improve to cope with the challenges ahead.
"We have the Victorian pioneers to thank for the infrastructure that has underpinned the quality of life for our generation.
"It is up to us to lay the ground for the next pioneers who will create the innovative systems and services that will serve future generations."
Mr Balls said: "For decades, successive governments have all too often ducked and delayed the vital decisions we need to make on Britain's long-term infrastructure.
"This excellent report sets out a clear blueprint for how we can better identify, plan and deliver our infrastructure needs.
"The Olympics showed what can be done when there is cross-party consensus and a sense of national purpose.
"Now we need that same drive and spirit to plan ahead for the next 30 years and the needs of future generations.
"I'm grateful to Sir John Armitt and his advisory panel for all their work over the last year.
"We urge the Government to work with us to implement this report as quickly as possible."
Treasury minister David Gauke said: "This is a massive own goal from Ed Balls. His report is an epitaph to Labour's failure over 13 years to address the infrastructure challenges Britain faces.
"This Government is clearing up the mess, creating an economy for hardworking people by investing in the biggest programme of infrastructure development since the Victorian era.
"But Labour haven't changed. All Ed Miliband and Ed Balls offer Britain is the same old Labour spending, borrowing and debt that got us into the mess in the first place. And it's hardworking people who would pay the price through higher taxes, higher mortgage rates and higher bills."
Campaign for Better Transport chief executive Stephen Joseph said: "The Armitt Review has made important recommendations about how we plan our infrastructure.
"We need to get past knee-jerk demands for ever more concrete and instead plan for a smarter, more efficient economy. Whoever wins the next election must take these proposals seriously."
The Institute for Public Policy Research said the G overnment's national infrastructure plan amounted to "a wish-list of projects that it would like to see delivered" but fell "far short of a plan for delivering them".
It said: "The independent National Infrastructure Commission proposed by Sir John would represent a significant improvement on current arrangements."
RAC Foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister said: "This report highlights a looming truth - the UK population is about to explode and we have not planned for it.
"The dithering is clear from the lack of a national policy statement for road and rail travel, though finally, more than three years later than expected, it should be published before Christmas. Without these strategic views of the future, how can spending decisions properly be made?"
The British Chambers of Commerce said: "An independent infrastructure commission could help end what we call 'Stop-Start' Britain, and promote greater business investment."