matt garrett

Republican legislators call for ODOT director to quit over emissions claims

by on November 19th, 2015 at 11:55 am

ODOT Director Matt Garrett
Matt Garrett has led ODOT since 2005.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

A few weeks after left-leaning former Metro president David Bragdon all but called for the firing of Oregon’s top transportation official, legislative Republicans are calling for it explicitly.

Oregon Department of Transportation Director Matt Garrett is facing criticism from both sides over the incident, earlier this year, when his office and Gov. Kate Brown’s temporarily claimed that tens of millions of dollars in freeway investments would be part of reducing long-run carbon emissions in Oregon by more than 2 million metric tons.


ODOT faces ‘incompetence or dishonesty at the highest levels,’ former Metro president says

by on October 23rd, 2015 at 3:14 pm

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David Bragdon earlier this year.
(Photo: M.Andersen/BikePortland)

Apparently this is what happens when an elected official doesn’t have to play nice any more.

Former two-term Metro President David Bragdon launched a politely spoken but blistering attack on the Oregon Department of Transportation Friday, urging his former state to reform its transportation system in response to “incompetence or dishonesty at the highest levels of ODOT,” among other factors.

Bragdon, who left office in 2010 for a top planning job in New York City and now runs a nonprofit think tank called TransitCenter, spoke in a lunchtime address to the City Club of Portland. His prepared remarks focused on the need to change what he called “the insanity of Oregon’s transportation governance system” but his criticism of the department’s leadership deepened in off-the-cuff answers to questions afterward about the Columbia River Crossing.


ODOT roundup: First green lane; director on freight policy; and a big job opening

by on June 18th, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Seeing green on SW Barbur.
(Photo: Alan Love)

I’ve got a couple of news tidbits from the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) that have piled up in my inbox so I thought I’d share them all at once. From a new job opening in their Active Transportation section to the installation of their first-ever green colored bikeway, the agency continues to show positive progress.

First, according to a reader who rides on SW Barbur everday, the Oregon Department of Transportation has just completed the main part of their Barbur Blvd Bike Improvement Project (a project we shared more about back in March). Reader Alan Love reports that ODOT has added green coloring the southbound bike lane on Barbur Blvd. that leads to the Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway turnoff.

Here are two photos of the new markings sent in by Alan…

Interview with ODOT Director Matt Garrett (Part 2)

by on May 16th, 2012 at 10:04 am

ODOT Director Matt Garrett-1
ODOT Director Matt Garrett, photographed in Salem.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)


An interview with ODOT Director Matt Garrett (Part 1)

by on May 15th, 2012 at 10:13 am

ODOT Director Matt Garrett-2
The director of the Oregon Department of Transportation, Matt Garrett, in his office in Salem.
(Photos © J. Maus)


Matt Garrett to remain ODOT Director

by on February 16th, 2011 at 9:52 am

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Matt Garrett, Director of ODOT.
(Photo © J. Maus)

Last month, we wondered whether Governor Kitzhaber would make a personnel change at the most powerful position inside the Oregon Department of Transportation. This week the Governor announced a slew of changes atop various agencies — but ODOT wasn’t one of them. Read the email below that was sent from ODOT Director Matt Garrett to his employees about the news…

“I wanted you to know that I have received notice from Governor Kitzhaber that I will remain as director of ODOT.

As I told Governor Kitzhaber, I have been extremely proud to have led this organization for the past five years. I illustrated for him what you have accomplished in administrative efficiency, customer service and project/program delivery. You have a well-earned reputation for delivering huge programs like OTIA and the multimodal investment of ConnectOregon on time and on budget. Our work is very important because it affects thousands of Oregonians across the state every day. Your reputation and performance have favored me in this decision.

I thank Governor Kitzhaber for his trust and confidence in me and in us. Together we will accomplish much more. I appreciate what you do every day.”