I-5 Rose Quarter Project
It’s one thing for critiques of a project to swirl around transportation and advocacy circles; it’s another thing when a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter hops onto the story.
That’s what happened today with the Willamette Week’s publication of an article titled Questions About the Footprint of the I-5 Rose Quarter Project Intensify. The news that ODOT is being intentionally dishonest about the true width of their I-5 expansion plans through the central city is not new. What’s important about Willamette Week reporter Nigel Jaquiss doing a story on it is that it gets the idea more firmly on the radar of influential local electeds and makes them comment about it on the record.
And Jaquiss has also furthered the story in a significant way: By highlighting new documents from the nonprofit No More Freeways that show the potential width of the freeway is even wider than anyone previously expected. Here’s an excerpt from his piece (emphasis mine):[Read more…]
“‘Improve’ [air quality] is not the standard we want… You could have technically an improvement, but it could be immaterial and the air is still not safe for and healthy for children.”
— Julia Brim-Edwards, Portland Public Schools Board member
Even though drivers on Interstate 5 through north Portland already emit unhealthy levels of toxic gases from their cars and trucks, the Oregon Department of Transportation wants to widen it and bring those vehicles even closer to the kids who attend Harriet Tubman Middle School.