Previous Metro Requests
The Metro Council sent a letter in October, 2006, asking for better alternatives.
October 2006 Letter to CRC
On February 13, 2007, the Metro Council discussed the Columbia River Crossing. Some on the Council expressed surprise and concern that the CRC had essentially ignored their requests from the previous fall. Here are the Minutes from that work session.
On February 22, 2007, the Metro Council passed the following resolution:
Resolution 07-3782B which provided the inspiration for the "4th Alternative Subcommittee" following a public hearing in the Metro Council Chamber.
Here is their request for a "supplemental" bridge:
In addition to the CRC staff recommended alternatives, the Metro Council supports including in the DEIS for additional analysis an alternative that includes a supplemental bridge built to current seismic standards to carry cars, trucks, high capacity transit, bicycles and pedestrians. This alternative retains the existing I-5 bridges for freeway travel with incremental improvements to those bridges and the key access ramps, to improve flow and increase safety on I-5. Additionally, this alternative could include replacing the swing span of the downstream railroad bridge with a movable span located in a mid-river location.
This restatement of a similar request in their 2006 letter has been ignored by the CRC in their "supplemental bridge" options in these key respects: 1. I-5 traffic is placed on the supplemental bridge. 2. The railroad swing span is not replaced, which would have eliminated most, if not all bridge lifts on I-5. 3. Bikes and pedestrians were left on the existing bridges, rather than using the new supplemental bridge.
On May 27, 2008, the Metro Council discussed the next steps they will take to help direct the process. Here are two alternative resolutions that were introduced: Draft Metro Resolutions
Council President Bragdon offered some amendments to Councilor Burkholder's resolution.
On June 5, 2008, the Metro Council voted 6-2 for President Bragdon's amended version of the Burkholder resolution, with Councilors Liberty and Hosticka opposed. See link to Oregonian article on home page. We will be providing additional commentary and information about this decision in the coming days.
The Metro Council will still need to vote to approve the "Locally Preferred Alternative" in July, but it is clear now that the "Replacement Bridge" plus Light Rail will be the choice.
Interesting note from the Hearing: TriMet Board Member Lynn Lehrbach announced that the Washington Department of Transportation will be picking up the entire local match for the light rail portion of the project. What does this mean? Will it really be ALL costs, including vehicles and additions to maintenance facilities for TriMet? Is this deal signed?