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With eye on Portland-area freeway expansions, ODOT announces new “Mega Projects” office

Posted by on September 6th, 2019 at 10:05 am

Prep for a future Columbia River crossing project will be among the office’s priorities.

The Oregon Department of Transportation is bulking up to handle a future where the Portland region is an epicenter of highway megaprojects.

In an email (below) sent yesterday afternoon to all employees, ODOT Deputy Director Paul Mather announced the formation of the new Office of Urban Mobility & Mega Projects to be based in Portland. A search process for a manager of this office is just getting underway.

The move comes in response to House Bill 2017, the $5.3 billion transportation package passed by the Oregon Legislature in 2017. That bill laid out funding for several projects in the Portland region (ODOT Region 1) and it defined “mega transportation projects” as those that, “cost at least $360 million to complete, that attract a high level of public attention or political interest because of substantial direct and indirect impacts on the community or environment or that require a high level of attention to manage the project successfully.” (The bill also established the Joint Interim Task Force On Mega Transportation Projects.)

Among the projects ODOT will focus on in this new office are expansions to I-5 and I-205, and an effort to re-kindle the Columbia River Crossing.

Here’s Mather’s official announcement:

ODOT staff, partners and stakeholders:

ODOT Deputy Director Paul Mather.

House Bill 2017 brings some great benefits to our organization and to the state’s transportation system. HB 2017 also brings great challenges. To complete key work the bill charges ODOT with undertaking, we need to hire more. We also need to actively coordinate with our stakeholders and contractors to help ensure on time and on budget performance.

The OTC [Oregon Transportation Commission] has been clear about the importance of the success of the projects in HB 2017 and has asked us to ensure we are organized for success. Many of the “mega” projects in HB 2017 are in the Portland metro area. The burden of managing those projects is falling heavily on Region 1. At times in our agency’s past, large efforts such as the State Radio Project, the Oregon Transportation Investment Act III State Bridge Program, and others have led us to create special organizational structures to handle a particular body of work.

It’s in that spirit that today I am announcing the formation of the Office of Urban Mobility & Mega Projects, which will be led by a manager we will hire through a search process that is just getting underway. The Urban Mobility and Mega Projects Manager will be located in Portland and report directly to the Highway Division Administrator.

The Urban Mobility and Mega Projects Office will be charged with development and delivery of a number of projects and programs, including:

  • Rose Quarter
  • I-205: Stafford Rd to Oregon City
  • Tolling program
  • Key agency liaison for the Interstate 5 bridge project
  • Growing capacity to deliver future programs that may be on the horizon

We are making this move in conjunction with our Oregon Transportation Commission and especially its new chair, Robert Van Brocklin.

This change is also designed to ensure the success of Region 1 on maintenance, operational and other project delivery challenges in the region. It will be critical that the Urban Mobility and Mega Project Office and Region 1 regularly coordinate and work in harmony in the “one ODOT” spirit. Once the Manager is hired, we will further assess what positions the Office will need and refine how they will coordinate with Region 1 and other areas of the agency.

I firmly believe this move will provide an important structure and focus to help us deliver on important charges given to us by House Bill 2017 and help ODOT meet the expectations of the OTC.

Paul Mather
ODOT Deputy Director

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Note that the leader of this new office will report to the Highway Division Administrator, a position currently filled by Kris Strickler, who’s in line for the agency’s top job. As you can see in the ODOT org chart above, if Strickler moves up, next in line is McGregor Lynde. Lynde was formerly the Active Transportation Division manager. That position has been vacant for a few months but I just confirmed they’ve hired Jeff Flowers to fill it. Flowers had been in charge of the Program & Funding Services Unit within the Action Transportation Section.

In related news, the OTC discussed the appointment of a new ODOT director in a closed-door meeting this week. Sources say they’ll continue deliberations in a meeting next week when a decision will likely be made. Stay tuned.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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91 Comments
  • Avatar
    John Lascurettes September 6, 2019 at 10:18 am

    “ODOT Deputy Director Paul Mather announced the formation of the new Office of Urban Mobility & Mega Projects to be based in Portland”

    Shots fired across the bow!

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      John Lascurettes September 6, 2019 at 10:23 am

      Not a single named “mega project” mentions anything benefitting something other than automobiles. I wouldn’t describe that as “urban mobility”.

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        cmh89 September 6, 2019 at 10:36 am

        It was just a typo. It should read Office of Urban Immobility and Mega projects. Designing new and improved ways to keep cities stuck in traffic.

        I do love that ODOT has created one office to handle the development of congestion charges, which are supposedly an attempt to get people to drive less, and freeway expansion in an attempt to get people to drive more. Makes one wonder about the true intentions for the State behind congestion charges.

        I will say, it perfectly embodies Kate Browns time as the governor. Pay lip service to environmental and sustainability concerns while green-lighting new sources of pollution.

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          John Lascurettes September 6, 2019 at 11:02 am

          And NPR just ran a story this morning how Gov. Insley is going to make sure that southwest Washingtonians will be “taken care of” and have a voice in Portland/Oregon’s tolling plan. I thought he was supposed to be the environmental candidate before dropping out of the primaries.

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            cmh89 September 6, 2019 at 11:48 am

            I honestly don’t think tolls are the answer on I5. While it’s obviously Clark County’s fault that the CRC got scrapped in the first place, most people in Vancouver I talk to want some kind of light rail. I think there are has been enough of a shift in opinion there that the CRC wouldn’t fail again. At this point, a good chunk of Vancouverites would love an alternative to driving but it doesn’t exist.

            My dream is that Oregon and Washington build a CRC with light rail and then levy a tax on parking in heavily congested areas. I know people who live in Arbor Lodge and Boise-Elliot who drive downtown. I commute from North Portland and see hundreds of SOVs driving the course of the yellow line everyday. Its simply too cheap to park your car in Portland.

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              Chris I September 6, 2019 at 12:13 pm

              Eliminate most street parking downtown and use the space to build high-quality bikeways. This will allow the city to increase parking prices on the spots that do remain. Fewer places to park downtown means fewer people driving downtown. Extend the yellow line over the Columbia and build a downtown light trail tunnel to relieve the Steel Bridge bottleneck and permit 4-car MAX trains.

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                Alan 1.0 September 6, 2019 at 5:16 pm

                I like it, but I thought MAX cars were about 100′ and city blocks are 200′. What happens in the downtown grid? I hope I’m wrong. 🙂

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 6, 2019 at 12:14 pm

              Tolling without providing an alternative to driving won’t cut driving much if most people are driving in order to get to work. Maybe it will convince a few people to move to Portland, or to change jobs, or to work from home a little more, or take C-Tran, but I have a hard time believing it’s going to do much besides punish a captive audience. The commute already sucks enough that I believe most of the easy changes have already occurred.

              Don’t get me wrong — I’m all for punishing Vancouverites, I just don’t think it’s going to make a big difference in the number of Washington drivers on our roads (though, depending on where the tolls are collected, and how high they are, they may shift people off I-5 and onto neighborhood streets).

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                dan September 6, 2019 at 12:21 pm

                It seems that the congestion charge in London did reduce traffic, and it seems safe to say that much of that traffic was people driving to work. Why wouldn’t it work here? At a minimum, it seems that appropriate tolls could motivate many people to carpool with a colleague or neighbor.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 6, 2019 at 12:33 pm

                London has a pretty good transit system that provides an alternative to driving. Vancouverites working in Portland are much more a “captive audience” when it comes to driving — the alternatives that currently exist just aren’t very good.

                I am sure some folks will carpool, but an incentive to do so (access to the HOV lanes, bypassing some of the punishing congestion) already exists, so most of the “easy” carpools are probably already being done.

                I totally support tolling, but I just don’t think it’s going to be particularly effective at reducing volumes. I hope I’m wrong, and I hope we get a chance to find out. And I really hope it doesn’t divert drivers onto surface streets.

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                B. Carfree September 6, 2019 at 5:14 pm

                The last information I saw indicated that 20% of the cars on I-5 from WA to PDX are shoppers who reside in WA and are driving over the state line to avoid paying their sales tax. Make the toll high enough and most of those cars go away, albeit with a chorus of screams from retailers who are abetting their tax evasion.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 6, 2019 at 5:52 pm

                Unless those shoppers have a masochistic streak and are doing their shopping during rush hour, they are not contributing to peak-hour congestion, which is what the engineers and planners think about when considering the size of their new bridge. If one of the goals of congestion pricing is to reduce the size of a future replacement bridge, it has to deal effectively with commuter trips. Off-peak shopping trips are not a critical issue, and congestion pricing would probably not impact them significantly.

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                Ron Swaren September 6, 2019 at 8:58 pm

                Clark county residents are paying about $200 million per year in Oregon income taxes. Since the big Silicon Forest economic recovery—beginning 3 decades ago–they have paid billions. And they also boost the Oregon economy with their shopping.

                More bridges! But maybe an AMTRAK commuter service would get some of their regular drivers off the road.

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                Dan A September 6, 2019 at 9:57 pm

                “Clark county residents are paying about $200 million per year in Oregon income taxes.”

                Or, they are avoiding Oregon property taxes. Or, they are taking jobs that could be held by Oregonians. Or, they could be living here and paying those taxes. They way you’ve framed it seems a little odd to me.

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                Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2019 at 12:26 am

                “taking jobs that could be held by Oregonians”

                Maybe the Vancouverites are better qualified, and thus companies based in Oregon are hiring them?

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                Dan A September 7, 2019 at 5:01 pm

                It’s fun to hear people from Vancouver complain about their commute to Wilsonville.

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                billyjobobb September 9, 2019 at 9:04 am

                congestion charges can work in places like London because the choice is a place close in, or a place just like it further out. You need to go pretty far to get the “American dream” 4 bedroom 3 bath and a 3 car garage on a quarter acre. Here it is within a reasonable commute.

                So many people will not, under any circumstance chose an 800 square foot 2 bedroom condo and a bike. It just won’t happen. Until everyone acknowledges that there are different needs and wants from different people, we will go nowhere.

                Comparing a city with millions of people to a region with that same number of people spread out over 5 or 6 times the space isn’t going to work.

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                9watts September 9, 2019 at 11:28 am

                “So many people will not, under any circumstance chose an 800 square foot…”

                Circumstances differ, but choice isn’t I don’t think the relevant variable here. Constraints are.

                Traffic congestion is a collective failure, and tolling is or can be a clever solution to this problem, and differences in the elasticity of demand don’t negate the salutary effect of congestion pricing, of tolls. You just have to pick the right toll, as others have already noted.

                A toll is a constraint, and climate change is also one.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 9, 2019 at 12:08 pm

                The idea is to figure things out before “constraints” come crashing down. For that you need people to choose behavior and technological change voluntarily. Tolls are not a constraint, but rather an incentive.

                The idea that “constraints” will force change is uninteresting. By the time that happens, it won’t really matter, and the range of choices we have may be utterly different than what we see from this vantage point.

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                9watts September 9, 2019 at 12:27 pm

                “Tolls are not a constraint, but rather an incentive.”

                All right. If you wish.

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                Alan 1.0 September 9, 2019 at 12:38 pm

                Hello, Kitty
                The idea that “constraints” will force change is uninteresting. By the time that happens, it won’t really matter, and the range of choices we have may be utterly different than what we see from this vantage point.

                Jonathan Franzen has interesting insights into that point of view in yesterday’s New Yorker.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 9, 2019 at 1:11 pm

                It appears that Franzen agrees with me that taking action now is worthwhile, even if it won’t ultimately “save” us, rather than waiting for constraints to force our hand. He also says that nothing we’re likely to do will ward off the climate catastrophe, and I agree with him there as well; it’s a question of harm reduction rather than problem avoidance.

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                Alan 1.0 September 11, 2019 at 2:02 pm

                My first take on Franzen’s piece was similar to your summary, and yes, it resonated with me, too. Further responses to it, particularly from scientists, have made me think twice. I can’t help but see parallels in my initial reaction to MLK’s “white moderates.”

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              J_R September 6, 2019 at 12:25 pm

              The Republicans in the Washington State Senate, not Clark County, was what stopped the CRC project.

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                cmh89 September 6, 2019 at 2:36 pm

                A little bit of A and a little bit of B

                Clark County voters elected Don Benton who ran on on a plank of killing the CRC, and his vote was what essentially killed the thing. If he had lost we’d probably have the CRC well along

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              J_R September 6, 2019 at 12:28 pm

              The decision to pursue mega projects was made by the legislature, not the OTC or ODOT directors, managers or line staff.

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                soren September 6, 2019 at 1:39 pm

                Kate Brown has been public about her support for highway expansion for years. Brown also controls the OTC and ODOT, selected transportation commission members who would push for highway megaprojects, and applied significant pressure to make HB2017 the priority of the legislature.

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            Dave September 6, 2019 at 1:32 pm

            Like all American politicians, Inslee is a titanic wuss and poseur when it comes to really supporting any alternative transportation and/or environmental initiatives. If he were other, for one he would have gone all LBJ on state senators Ann Rivers and Don Benton for throwing their anti-light rail jihad and sinking the CRC.

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        mh September 6, 2019 at 10:40 am

        “Tolling program.” Start there, and ignore every other priority until they get it functioning, and functioning well.

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        Ben P September 6, 2019 at 11:43 am

        You should move out of a city if you don’t want traffic. Or live in the same building you work in.

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          John Lascurettes September 6, 2019 at 12:47 pm

          People who live in this city rarely complain about the traffic because it’s easy to get around without a car. Those who live in the suburbs regularly grouse about it because the alternatives are limited.

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          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty September 6, 2019 at 1:12 pm

            >>> People who live in this city rarely complain about the traffic <<<

            Do you mean Portland?!?

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            Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2019 at 12:28 am

            You should talk to more people. That’s not my experience at all.

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            soren September 7, 2019 at 10:34 am

            People in Portland complain about people riding scooters*, people riding bikes, people walking, people captaining boats (bridge lift), and, occasionally, they even complain about people driving.

            PS: I just received my Segway Max scooter. It’s a beautiful ride.

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            Toby Keith September 8, 2019 at 8:21 am

            Uh, somebody is wearing their inner-city goggles. From where I’m sitting it would take nearly double to triple the time on mass transit to get to my job (only 10 miles!), and riding a bike is still not for the faint of heart.

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              billyjobobb September 9, 2019 at 9:07 am

              and if everybody else decided to move into the city to avoid the traffic getting in here, well……. good luck with that.

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        • Avatar
          ryan September 6, 2019 at 4:06 pm

          If only it were that easy.

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            sharonnasset September 10, 2019 at 12:42 pm

            There is an answer…. ThirdBridgeNow.org
            Come be a part of the Solution!

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          Alan 1.0 September 6, 2019 at 5:12 pm

          What if I want to live in a city with great active transportation? Vibrant civic life? Efficient and equitable use of public resources? Clean air? Quiet streets? No violence? They do exist!

          Recommended Thumb up 5

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            Ron Swaren September 6, 2019 at 8:51 pm

            Somewhere in the Sun Belt. Winter rains kill the long distance bike commute around here. Inner city area is different.

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        Another Engineer September 6, 2019 at 11:58 am

        Money should be spent on ensuring existing infrastructure is operating efficiently and deficient corridors, orphan highways, are retrofitted with transit lanes and protected lanes or parallel protected bike routes. As an ODOT R1 staffer this blind sided me last night and I was frustrated the rest of the day. Congestion pricing should be led by a dedicated Operations program, which ODOT lacks, not an office of “Mega Projects”.

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        Michael Andersen September 6, 2019 at 12:30 pm

        ODOT knows.

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          Alan 1.0 September 6, 2019 at 4:59 pm

          …Jack?

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        Jim September 6, 2019 at 5:07 pm

        Moving cars off the neighborhood streets is benefiting pedestrians and cyclists

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          sharonnasset September 10, 2019 at 12:47 pm

          YES~ Yes ~ Into the Ports and Out of the Neighborhoods
          safer streets, cleaner air, and less congestion Win, Win, Win!
          ThirdBridgeNow.org

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  • Avatar
    rick September 6, 2019 at 10:31 am

    losers

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    bikeninja September 6, 2019 at 10:31 am

    I hear Voldemort may be available for the position.

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    Dan A September 6, 2019 at 11:11 am

    Barf.

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    Roberta Robles September 6, 2019 at 11:42 am

    Mega Projects… We don’t need mega projects. We need mega leadership. I don’t see that happening unless we remove the head OTC Chair Bob Van Brocklin who is a partner at Stoel Rives. Stoel Rives who also represents oil and gas industry mega projects.

    ODOT is continuing to hire internally the same staff that led the last two mega projects disasters (CRC 2014 fiasco and the RQ Boondoggle).

    https://www.stoel.com/industries/energy-infrastructure

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      Concordia Cyclist September 9, 2019 at 8:53 am

      Just to clarify – Stoel Rives also is one of the leading firms in the nation in providing the legal work for start-up alternative power, especially in the area of wind farms. Yes, like all large firms with an energy practice, they work for oil and gas companies, but I’m not sure they should be painted as pro-fossil fuels with such a broad brush.

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    Johnny Bye Carter September 6, 2019 at 12:12 pm

    This is hilarious.

    We’re not going to get any Urban Mobility from people running the Highway Division by building all these projects for people to drive from the suburbs.

    The best I see happening is that Lynde moves up and requires that inadequate and uncomfortable facilities for vulnerable road users are build around the projects.

    We’re really going to have to step up our activism and opposition game. I see freeway occupations in our future (Sarah Iannarone already predicted this).

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    Candor Cane September 6, 2019 at 12:27 pm

    Maybe this office is all for planning that new high speed rail from Eugene to Seattle!

    (with a continuous multi-use path adjacent to the rail ROW)

    I’m sure that’s what this is really about, right guys???

    Given how much our state leaders love to talk about climate change, I am 100% confident that this office will be used to further the goals I outlined above.

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      Ryan September 6, 2019 at 12:54 pm

      That’s some deep, deep sarcasm 😀

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    dan September 6, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    Hello, Kitty
    London has a pretty good transit system that provides an alternative to driving. Vancouverites working in Portland are much more a “captive audience” when it comes to driving — the alternatives that currently exist just aren’t very good.I am sure some folks will carpool, but an incentive to do so (access to the HOV lanes, bypassing some of the punishing congestion) already exists, so most of the “easy” carpools are probably already being done.I totally support tolling, but I just don’t think it’s going to be particularly effective at reducing volumes. I hope I’m wrong, and I hope we get a chance to find out. And I really hope it doesn’t divert drivers onto surface streets.Recommended 0

    No argument that Vancouver WA does not have a transit system comparable to London! Still, I occasionally take the C-Tran bus from Portland to Vancouver during rush hour and in my mind, it beats the hell out of driving an SOV. Make the toll more than the bus fare and and I think there might be some converts. Of course, a southbound HOV lane on I-5 would be a good addition. At any rate, I’m with you – I hope we get a chance to see tolls in action and find out how they work.

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      John Lascurettes September 6, 2019 at 1:34 pm

      I knew someone at my last job that regularly too C-Tran from Battle Ground into downtown Portland. He much preferred it to driving too. Yet, that bus was still stuck in bridge traffic. If any bridge gets built, it must have a BRT or light rail option or it shouldn’t get built.

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      Dave September 6, 2019 at 1:36 pm

      What this Vancouverite would like to see is an HOV lane that runs the whole length of I-5 that is paralleled by I-205–that is, from Tualatin to near Clark County Fairgrounds. The piss-ant little bit of HOV lane there is was programmed from the beginning to fail, there simply isn’t enough of it. And, yes, it should include parts of the 5 that are only two lanes in each direction–it’s a good place for the idea of go big or go home.

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        dan September 9, 2019 at 10:19 am

        I’ve also wondered about the impact of opening the HOV lane to freight. Is there so much freight traffic that would break the HOV lane, or could it still be a net improvement for both HOV and freight drivers?

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 9, 2019 at 11:34 am

          Given the number of trucks I see on I-5, I am pretty sure it would break the HOV lane.

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            Middle of the Road Guy September 10, 2019 at 7:01 am

            And those trucks are shipping in good that the complainers here are buying.

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              Concordia Cyclist September 10, 2019 at 11:39 am

              I think its the commuter side of things are the real focus here, generating the vast majority of complaints.

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    Fred September 6, 2019 at 1:33 pm

    Wow – I had never seen the ODOT org chart before. Thanks for posting it.

    One look tells you everything you need to know: this is an agency that is all about building highways and serving motor vehicles and their drivers. The tiny twig belonging to “Active Transportation” is leaderless.

    Since ODOT is obviously committed to serving motor vehicles, one acid test we might apply to every future ODOT project is how the non-cars are accommodated – whether all modes are fully integrated, or bikes and peds are just an afterthought.

    I was wondering how the Tillikum bridge in Portland (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tilikum_Crossing) was able to be constructed with no accommodation for private motor vehicles. It appears that Trimet built the bridge for the orange MAX line (as well as buses and the streetcar), and then helpfully added the bike/ped lanes. For a nanosecond I thought maybe ODOT had built it but then I regained my sanity.

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      Alan 1.0 September 6, 2019 at 5:08 pm

      “The tiny twig belonging to “Active Transportation” is leaderless.”

      Wow, yeah, and it looks as though that “Transit Development” division is lumped in with “Rail/Transit,” too. Meanwhile, there are three separate divisions for “Driver & Motor Vehicle Services,” “Highway Division,” and “Motor Carrier Transportation.” That org chart speaks volumes.

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      Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2019 at 12:29 am

      Most of their funding comes from that sector. It makes sense that’s what they’d focus on.

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        Fred September 7, 2019 at 9:03 am

        I hate this argument – that it’s all about “funding.” It’s the same argument drug cartels use.

        People drive cars b/c they require no effort – and they are killing us, sometimes quickly but also slowly. And governments, through organizations like ODOT, are enabling it – making it so cheap and easy to drive that it’s no wonder people have become addicted to driving. The job of gov’t is not to enable addicts but to create an environment where people have incentives to do the right thing, not the easy thing.

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          Middle of the Road Guy September 8, 2019 at 2:49 am

          Hilarious false equivalency.

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            9watts September 9, 2019 at 9:26 am

            That is pretty rich, coming from you.

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            9watts September 9, 2019 at 10:25 am

            Middle of the Road Guy
            Most of their funding comes from that sector. It makes sense that’s what they’d focus on.Recommended 1

            No it does not.
            Not like cigarettes, for instance.

            In the case of cigarettes, cigarette taxes come as far as I know exclusively from smokers, and guess what… The money isn’t spent on making it easier to smoke, easier to blow smoke in the faces of all those who don’t smoke, easier to pass the costs of treating lung cancer ont society. It is spent on campaigns to discourage smoking.

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              Middle of the Road Guy September 10, 2019 at 7:02 am

              Transport networks are a public good. Drugs are not.

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                9watts September 10, 2019 at 8:45 am

                I agree that transportation networks are a public good, but we weren’t talking about transportation networks; we were talking about cars.
                Cars are a public bad, just like cigarettes.

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    tim September 6, 2019 at 1:55 pm

    cmh89
    While it’s obviously Clark County’s fault that the CRC got scrapped in the first place,

    NO NO NO it was METRO wanting to tax every business in WA to add to its revenue . you see if you have trimet you get bushiness tax in that area. WA was smart to tell metro to pound sand.

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    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty September 6, 2019 at 3:01 pm

      And look at the nice bridge it got them!

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      Gary B September 6, 2019 at 4:45 pm

      Oh. Metro, an Oregon agency, was going to tax Washington businesses? Go on…

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        GlowBoy September 6, 2019 at 6:49 pm

        I, too, would like to hear how TriMet would manage to levy payroll taxes on Washington businesses like they do in Oregon.

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    Bike Guy September 6, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    seems like our future is going to have more / bigger freeways (albeit tolled) and fewer velodromes (Alpenrose).

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    rachel b September 6, 2019 at 2:14 pm

    Our air is getting thick as a pudding. 🙁 I do wish humanity would stop doing such wrongheaded, short-sighted, counterintuitive and disastrous things at this critical juncture in history.

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      bikeninja September 6, 2019 at 2:58 pm

      Like the late Mayan civilization, we seem to be building these temples to our gods (automobiles in our case) just as we approach the end of our current living arrangement. In a very few years people will look back and wonder what the heck we were thinking, wasting the last of the surplus energy from the oil age on monuments with so little future.

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        rachel b September 6, 2019 at 11:00 pm

        An apt comparison–well said.

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        X September 10, 2019 at 3:13 pm

        Replete with human sacrifice

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    kathy September 7, 2019 at 12:51 am

    Portland is about 15 years or maybe 20 years behind on transportation.

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      Dan A September 7, 2019 at 4:59 pm

      Behind who?

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    Mike Quigley September 7, 2019 at 7:29 am

    On the other hand it’s all politics. And Americans continue to elect and re-elect the same old political hacks who perpetuate this kind of chaos.

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    Jim Lee September 7, 2019 at 8:23 am

    Bike Guy
    seems like our future is going to have more / bigger freeways (albeit tolled) and fewer velodromes (Alpenrose).Recommended 0

    I’ve been watching the Northwest Regional Qualifying Pickleball (YES!) Tournament at out at the excellent facilities provided by Tualatin Hills Parks and Recreation District. A well taxed resident of that district tells me they have scads of money and are only too eager to spend it.

    A concerted effort by our community of cyclists might persuade them to produce a modern velodrome.

    Remember that the fence behind Alpenrose borders Washington County. Possibly we could have a 250 meter track nearer than we ever thought!

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    Carter Kennedy September 7, 2019 at 11:52 am

    We need to consider the CO2 emissions of any project. Of course, ODOT will say it will reduce emissions due to less idling, but we know there will be considerable induced demand and eventually more congestion and emissions. When you consider the amount of concrete the CRC will require, it will add an unconscionable amount of CO2 to the air.

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      Middle of the Road Guy September 9, 2019 at 12:39 am

      Portland is roughly the 600th largest metropolitan area in the world.

      Whatever we do is less than a drop in a bucket.

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        Dan A September 9, 2019 at 8:35 am

        I sure hope you don’t waste your time voting.

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          Middle of the Road Guy September 10, 2019 at 7:03 am

          Depends on the candidate. Some are not worth voting for.

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      X September 10, 2019 at 3:54 pm

      Yeah. How many cubic yards of concrete in the proposed Rose Quarter. Boondoggle?

      As big a mess as the RQB appears to be, I could almost support it if there was a ramp to shoot buses and perhaps HOV straight into the restricted lane. I’ve seen that system in Seattle and it works well. Made me feel kinda small-townish coming there from a place where BRT is treated like a stroll on hot coals. Don’t want to rush in, don’t want to be the first, oh no.

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    mark smith September 7, 2019 at 8:23 pm

    They don’t want a toll because not near enough people will use it too death and will instead jump over to i205. So they want it free so it will clog up, they can endlessly fuss with lane structure, design, make more lanes…blah blah. Look at Salt Lake. That’s what they want. All building all the time and massively wide highways.

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    X September 10, 2019 at 3:09 pm

    “It’s fun to hear people from Vancouver complain about their commute to Wilsonville.”

    Trimet (Portland, CarDOT) should make a path, or close a lane, from Vancouver to Wilsonville to accommodate the Vine buses. A little paint and $3 million worth of platforms = regional mass transit in the I-5 corridor.

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  • Jim Labbe
    Jim Labbe September 12, 2019 at 1:42 pm

    I’d like to propose a “mega project” that would dedicate $360 million plus to a region wide process wherein ordinary community members across the region could propose transportation and safety related improvements in their communities. Budget delegates selected form the community would work with ODOT and local government staff to refined projects to ensure feasibility and equity. Once developed as feasible projects, they would go back to the community for a vote, the project winning the most funds being implemented with available funds. Cities around the world are doing participatory budgeting (PB, https://www.shareable.net/15-participatory-budgeting-projects-that-give-power-to-the-people/). Seattle allocates ~3 million annually to parks and transportation this way and is talking about tripling the annual amount allocated through PB. Why not in the Portland-Metro Region?

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    • Jim Labbe
      Jim Labbe September 12, 2019 at 3:57 pm

      That is the “the projects winning the most votes…”

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