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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Mayor Pitches Plan to Give West Hayden Island to the Port

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Wed, Aug 29, 2012 at 2:14 PM

If everything lines up as expected, the fate of West Hayden Island—800 acres of mostly untouched wilderness that's been coveted for years by the Port of Portland—could be decided before the end of this year.

After months and months of high-level discussions among insiders and wonks, a parade of public votes and hearings is finally about to start over the next several weeks. It's no small question: The Port wants to carve out more than a third of that land to build a new deepwater terminal that it might not need—while trying to get away with as little environmental mitigation as the city will allow.

Mayor Sam Adams and the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (which has a detailed web page devoted to the project) are the key architects of that compromise. And now, today, they've put out a video laying out the balancing act they're trying to pull off. It's pretty sympathetic to the port (it doesn't really show the precious bald eagle nesting habitat that would give way to parking lots and piles of new dirt). But at least it encourages concerned people to chime in and offer their thoughts on what could wind up a bad deal for the city.

Watch it here. And please make sure to take the mayor up on his offer.

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