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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 8, 2010 9:49 AM. The previous post in this blog was Just how broke is Tri-Met?. The next post in this blog is Quicksand in Lake Oswego. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, October 8, 2010

Plaid Pantry guy: New Interstate Bridge could bankrupt both states

He's hired a consultant who thinks the whole deal is doomed. And get this: It might be illegal to try to toll the Glenn Jackson Bridge to pay for the new I-5 span.

Comments (28)

Chris Girard (CEO of PP) came to our neighborhood association meeting a few years back when they were opening up a new Plaid Pantry store in our 'hood. Talk about a down-to-earth guy. He listened to everyone's concerns (increased traffic, risk of tobacco/alcohol sales to minors, etc.) talked about his store policies on such things, talked about the jobs, and left with a favorable N.A. vote. Really a positive experience.

Regardless of the merits of this particular project, I find it sad that our country can no longer accomplish large public works.

I look at something like the Marquam Bridge or Fremont Bridge and think "America is no longer capable of getting something like that done."

Sad commentary on what's happened to America over the last 40 to 50 years.

Wonder what their motivation for the study was. Also interesting to note, Carl Piacentini (Plaid Pantry founder) was on the Portland Planning Commission for awhile as well as having a famously failed run for Kiddie Council).

I think America CAN still get large public works projects done. But in order for that to happen, government (A) has to be willing to say "no" to some elements of projects in order to keep costs under control, and (B) has to look at reducing the ridiculous amount of bureaucracy and red tape that has been piled on over the years that add years and expense to a public works project.

Could America build a transcontinental railroad, the Golden Gate Bridge, or Hoover Dam in 2010? Not as it stands right now. Any one of those projects would be tied up for decades just getting the environmental studies done.

Re: "...I find it sad that our country can no longer accomplish large public works."

Snards, this is not a national problem. Remember the I-35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis in 2007? "Within a few days of the collapse, the Minnesota Department of Transportation planned a replacement bridge, the I-35W Saint Anthony Falls Bridge. Construction was completed rapidly and it opened on September 18, 2008."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I-35W_Mississippi_River_bridge

The problem is with the quality of local leadership and the structure(s) of governance in which leadership presumes to serve. And, of course, managerial incompetence, which, in the City of Portland, is fostered and maintained by the commission form of government.

If you see "Creative Class" Joe Cortright's name on something, get ready for a bucketload of B.S.

Rich, those are the problems I'm referring to. Lawyers, environmentalists, consultants, process. And other generally escalating costs.

Gardiner, I'm sure if the I-5 crossing collapsed that a replacement would be built ASAP because it would have to be, and the Feds would pay for it.

Under normal circumstances, I doubt this will be done within the next 20 years which makes all the current debate a bit silly to me.

How come the mayors of portland and vancouver didn't get a copy? Won't Adams be upset since hes said the bridge "needs my approval"????

Snards:Regardless of the merits of this particular project, I find it sad that our country can no longer accomplish large public works. .

Do you think all this lack of money may have anything to do with the billions shoveled into the ongoing "wars" and the military industrial complex budget? or is it in the trillions now?
Who has the figures?

While Joe Cortwright's comments are often valid, he is far from a dispassionate observer on this. He has been a major pusher of the "smart growth" social engineering experiments, and looks fondly towards a future without autos.

LucsAdvo, it was actually John Piacentini (Carl's brother) who founded Plaid Pantry in 1960. John ran for Congress in (I think) 1974, losing to Robert B. Duncan in the Third District. Carl was a teacher and public school principal. He did serve on the School Board and the Planning Commission, and ran against Mike Lindberg for the Portland City Council.

$1,700 million for the 30-year cost of collecting tolls electronically? That works out to $155,251 per day. Seems a litlle hard to believe...

Poot, you're not supposed to actually read that stuff.

Thanks for the clarification, Isaac

I look at something like the Marquam Bridge or Fremont Bridge and think "America is no longer capable of getting something like that done."

They got it done in Michigan. Gardiner Menefree beat me to the reply, and it's spot-on: In Portland, people vote idiots like Scam Adams into office, and refuse attempts to recall him. In Michigan, they obviously have folks who can get things done.

They got it done in Michigan.

Those sturdy, determined midwesterners! They even moved Minneapolis to Michigan.

"In Portland, people vote idiots like Scam Adams into office, and refuse attempts to recall him."
===

Well, but do they have the first large city gay mayor, like us in Portland?

Come on, would you rather have Progressive or Productive?

Since obviously it seems that we can't have both in Portland!

Oh, sorry - Ministroni. Er, Minnesota. In any case, I can see it from my house.

Why we can't get stuff done:

We need a bridge.

But we can't build a bridge. We need it to be "green", be carbon-neutral, have a park, an alternative energy supply, a light rail/streetcar line, a bike facility, a pedestrian facility (which can't be shared with the bike facility); there needs to be repeated, overlapping traffic studies; a development overlap plan to decide how the area around the bridge will be developed; a transit plan; four community associations, six transportation committees, and the 1000 Friends of Oregon must be involved early on (and don't forget the Bicycle Transportation Alliance!). And whoever owns the bridge doesn't get much of a say in the matter, their job is to simply build what everyone else says to build, and then maintain it (but using someone else's money).

Harry - Scam is not the the first gay mayor of a large city. Depending on your definition of large city (say over 1 million) then it would be the current mayor of Houston. If it's smaller then Heilman of West Hollywood wins with his 1984 election. Why be such a hater Harry. Scam's orientation is not the issue. It's his lack of competence, ethics, and brains. Straight folks suffer from those defects too.

Such a hater... lol, yep, all of SCAM's critics are haters, homophobes, bigots, even Mr. Ball.

"Scam's orientation is not the issue. It's his lack of competence, ethics, and brains."
---

What do you attribute his lack of being recalled? I agree with you that it is his lack of competence, ethics and brains. Therefore, I submit that it IS his orientation that is keeping him in office. A straight SCAM would have been recalled long ago (if he was ever elected in the first place).

Portland, Progressive enough to elect a Gay Mayor, but not quite Progressive enough to recall or reject one. You watch, Portland WILL re-elect him. Sad.

Harry dude, if you keep playing the queer card, you will detract from your point. Leave it alone and just focus on the real facts and the real issues unless of course your haterness just won't let you. Trust me you will alienate every progressive around here with your talk and attitude. You've said as much and you still don't get it do you? Are you really that dense or that much of a hater? What's more important to you, having Scam gone or being a breeder bigot?

The fact that this man is still squatting in the Mayor's office is due to two main things, in equal parts:

A) He is very cozy with transit/ development interests.

B) He is Gay.

I'm sorry, but to point out that a straight man would have immediately resigned or been forced to resign after admitting to having sex with a 17 year old he was mentoring, is not bigoted in the least. It's as plain as day. There is one hell of a double standard here. Are there double standards elsewhere, in favor of breeders ? Of course there are...doesn't change the facts of the matter at hand, though.

Do you good people really think that a heterosexual Mayor in his 40s, who admitted to statutory rape, would still be in office, in any city in America ?

Really ? Come on.

Cabbie - Really? Neil G. and those that covered (including cops) for him never got any punishment for what Neil did with a 13 yol girl who was the daughter of his employee. Give me a break. Do you have selective memory?

And worse still. There's a reporter in PDX who wants to run a story vindicating Neil and saying that the 13 yol girl asked for it. Please.

I wondered about that when the story broke. Statue of limitations for Neil's statutory rape and the people involved in the coverup, as the actual crime was decades ago, perhaps ?

To clarify: What I meant was a mayor right now today who got caught while he was currently in office. Or a politician, period...Packwood resigned.

Haha, just re-read this. Um, "Statute" of limitations.

Though, honestly, your fair city deserves a commemorative *statue* of limitations, celebrating all those child molesters in public office whom the authorities refuse to prosecute. Right in front of the cop shop or City Hall, a great big statue of limitations, as Oregon politicians seem to have none when it comes to the sexual abuse of minors.

Cabbie - You think people in high places didn't know what Neil was doing then? You do realize that most of those people still hold some kind of power even if it might not be elected?

Do you think that the then chief of police and others didn't know Frank Ivancie beat and terrorized his wife when he was mayor. I first heard about that from a guy who had a brother who was a cop. I heard all kinds of dirt from that guy. The then chair of the county commission had a son who was a klepto. The DA would not prosecute him. So Fred's treated him as a trespasser and removed him from their property anytime they knew he was on premises.

When I got here from points East, oh so long ago, I was under the impression that this was a politically clean and honest city. I am no longer under such illusions.

The reasons that people don't care about Scam is that kissing a 17 yol boy is not considered heinous unless you are an RRR freak. And both have said that there was no sex until the kid was 18 which is legal. And the kid has a record.

Personally, I find it odious that men freak out far more about men having sex with underaged girls than underaged boys. Girls have less of an ability to defend themselves in oh so many ways. Both crimes should be given equal weight.

Oppps that comment should have read:
freak out far more about men having sex with underaged boys than underaged girls.

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