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Friday, December 4, 2009

Sam Adams: 6 Reasons to Change Direction on the CRC

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Fri, Dec 4, 2009 at 4:08 PM

On the heels of this morning's big Columbia River Crossing meeting and protest, Mayor Adams just posted this list of succinct bullet point reasons to toss out the current 10-lane, $3.6 billion design:

1. The ground is shifting under our assumptions about tolls. Vancouver Mayor Royce Pollard supported them; Vancouver Mayor-Elect Tim Leavitt does not.

2. Portland's new Climate Action Plan. In driving the plan forward, I've learned that some of the fundamental environmental analysis and assumptions of the CRC are more questionable than I first understood.

3. With the proposed CRC project refinements, Hayden Island loses its local service grocery store and other basic amenities. The new design results in a deeper-trenched main street and calls into question our ability to realize the recently adopted Hayden Island Plan.

4. Working with County Chair Ted Wheeler on the Sellwood Bridge replacement project has shown me how tough it is to get federal dollars for local transportation projects. I fear that getting CRC federal funding may cannibalize funding for much-needed projects.

5. We have more time. The Feds have delayed consideration of transportation requests.

6. It's not yet clear what will be the land-use and environmental impacts of bridge elements. We need to look at how projected growth will change as a result of the new bridge.

In a joint statement they released last night, Adams and Metro President David Bragdon spelled out the specific changes they need to see before they'll sign off on the bridge plan. Among them is this interesting and diplomatically worded demand: "Daylight the project’s internal decision making to ensure an unrestricted flow of information... possible."

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