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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 2, 2011 8:44 AM. The previous post in this blog was Is Jeffer-Sam Smith bending another set of rules?. The next post in this blog is After the dead Duck, who will be the head Duck?. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, December 2, 2011

Worth a thousand words

We've been wondering for a while now just who is this Jack Hoffman guy. We know a few things about him. He's the mayor of Lake Oswego, a lawyer in a big bucks Portland law firm, and a big pusher of the infernal Portland-to-Lake-O. streetcar project, whose sole purpose is to enable a Homer Williams condo bunker cluster on the east side of State Street. The Williams deal would be heavily subsidized by taxpayers on both ends of the planned streetcar line, and there would be precious little public benefit to go with the massive public risk.

Hoffman's been publicly accused of serious conflicts of interest in connection with the project, but he plows right ahead with a straight face. Most recently, an official city survey on the streetcar came back with a stinging thumbs-down from the Lake O. taxpayers. But the mayor simply won't let this particular zombie die.

So when we saw a link to a Channel 2 video about the latest streetcar-related shenanigans down that way, we eagerly clicked to see if we could get a look at the guy. And O... M... G. Look at what popped up on the screen at about 1:45 into the clip:

Yes, it's the dreaded Blumenauer bicycle pin -- a sure sign that you're about to get some bad apartments, all in the phony name of "green." Bought and paid for by your local real estate sharpies. There's one big difference, though -- Earl the Pearl's job is safe. Hoffman's City Hall gig is getting shakier by the week.

Comments (52)

Jack -
The P - LO Streetcar is a great idea. Whether it happens right away or not is debatable. Here's my thought process: There is an existing, historic, streetcar right of way with existing tracks that runs between the two cities right now. They already run historic streetcars on it during the weekends. If any rail route in the region makes sense, I would think its this one because of cost. Highway 43 is congested in mornings and evenings. It helps to redevelop an incredible section of waterfront that is now separating the center of lake o from the Willamette river. Some of that area is now occupied by junky industrial uses. People will ride the thing. TriMet just released info that shows that twice as many people ride the existing streetcar per hour as any of the region's bus lines.

The biggest protesters are a bunch of 1 percenters in dunthorpe who apparently hate the idea of hoodlums riding the streetcar to lake o.

You're siding with the 1 percenters?

Yeah, the "junky industrial places" that employ people instead of wasting a billion and a half dollars. And I for one, am sick to death of all the percentage mumbo-jumbo. Funny thing is that is primarily used by folks that, heretofore, loudly decried the labeling of people.

But what would I know, I'm just part of the 17.6% according to the O's PERS reporting.

I occasionally drive 43 to LO during the evening commute, and I rarely encounter anything close to congestion, so I would challenge that assertion. (And as a side note, it's those "facts" that planners throughout the region spew that need to be closely examined - question the source of those.)

And, will the streetcar run on already-existing tracks? No, like Portland they'll totally screw up Macadam/43, and then it will be congested. Epic fail when it comes to common sense.

Timber Jim,
Your ignorance is showing. The "historic" right of way is in such disrepair that the sight seeing trolley hasn't run for two years. The trestle is too dangerous. Also, they are going to PAVE the line rather than use existing or new tracks. So a new concrete right of way with tracks in it.

Umpire is right -- the streetcar won't even run on the right of way the whole length of Macadam, but will be in the street and the speed limit will be lowered to 25 mph. That will create the congestion they claim exists now.

All at taxpayer expense. Why? So Homer Williams and Dike Dame (the felon) can line their pockets with another high rise urban jungle that LAKE OSWEGANS don't want. The biggest protesters are NOT from Dunthorpe, but the huge majority of us who don't want our town ruined by Jack Hoffman and Homer Williams.

They really should come up with a separate lapel pin for the streetcar supporters. Something that really says "I stand with Homer Williams!"

"dreaded Blumenauer bicycle pin"

Au contraire - He gets one of those for each bicyclist he hits on his way from LO in his M-B to the law office downtown.

OTOH - Once he starts calling everyone who disagrees with him foolish idiots full of lunacy, then we'll know he's channeling Earl.

"Timber Jim," who used to post here as "Phil P.," is a Portland City Hall shill. Loves bike sharing, Director Park, condos at Washington High, the whole works. If it isn't Mark Bunster, it's somebody like him. Or one of the developer weasels.

We need to export more of Portlandia and El-Oh is the perfect place.

Keep L. O. Weirder.

Every time I see one of those bike pins, I mentally knock 10 IQ points off the wearer.

In the past projects like this could be pushed past voters by labeling them as “progressive” or “green” or “sustainable”. Any opposition to their plans could only be a conspiracy to stop progress by those crazy right wingnuts, or tea party members, or those non progressives. But the state of the economy has awakened the sleeping giant of fiscally concerned citizens, both right and left.

Is the conflict of interest as written about in the link above OK?
That was written in May 2011. Too bad the people didn't begin an immediate recall.
I am thinking those in LO hadn't had a dose yet of the pdx type of treatment
and may have thought rational facts, fairness and listening to the citizens would prevail.

http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/encyclopedia/Clo-Con/Conflict-of-Interest.html

LO Resident: The "legal" right of way was preserved in a lawsuit a few decades ago, when the railroad sold the right of way to the public agencies and the Dunthorpe residents with abutting property sued claiming the right of way easement had already been abandoned by the RR company. The residents lost that legally meritorious, but politically difficult case. The historic streetcar then went into operation solely to preserve the right of way easement from further claims of abandonment until the planned commuter line could be funded and built. The trestle was in pretty bad shape even at that time, so I'm not surprised if it is no longer in service. Call me crazy if you like, but I tend to agree with Timber Jim, whoever he is, that putting this existing public right of way (preserved in the courts) to public use as a modern short trip rail line makes more sense than some of the other track projects we've seen in the area in the past few decades.

I'm going to say that the trolley route makes sense, BUT...

The fact is that there is a protected right of way with rails atop it. It is in public ownership. It has had a trolley running on it up until last year (due to "mechanical difficulties".) There is a trestle that needs significant repair; TriMet actually funded a trestle repair to the tune of $350,000 - where is that money?

It is not rocket science to take this line, do a reasonable rehab of the route to have light-weight trolleys or other light railcars be able to run 40 MPH. There are small, light-weight diesel railcars (also known as railbuses) that could do the work, and provide a reasonably-frequent service. There are advantages to getting the buses off of Highway 43.

In fact I even saw this vehicle as perfect for the route (however the exact vehicle in Germany was plagued with mechanical issues; a re-work of the mechnical systems should fix it).

http://www.railfaneurope.net/pix/de/diesel/dmu/670/pix.html

Even to run it as a historic trolley line using vintage trolleys in an actual transit service (just like Seattle's Waterfront Streetcar (currently not in service), San Francisco's cable cars or F-Line, New Orleans' streetcar lines - doing so would still require a modest track rehab as well as electrification (or running with towed diesel generators which distract from the trolley) but still far less than $50M/mile. That would still be a $5-6 million/mile project to add the electric overhead and substations.

Now...

What PBOT/LO/Metro/TriMet wants is a grossly expensive, over-built streetcar line.

It will require widening the right-of-way, building new tracks, electrification, over-built, expensive stations with "art".

It is being built to accomodate developers, not riders and citizens.

It will cost $50 million or more per mile to build. (A simple track rehab would be closer to $1-2 million a mile.)

It is a political payback for many people.

It will require real estate aquisition of some of Portland's most expensive real estate along the Willamette River.

It will invite prolonged lawsuits dealing with real estate matters.

There will be environmental concerns with widening and rebuilding the roadbed in landslide prone areas.

This is a project that started out simple and has gone out of control. Typical of Portland transit projects. The idea of building transit to serve people seems foreign to the planners, they are more interested in pandering to developers and writing blank checks. And who loses? Citizens - and ironically, the people that need, and currently use, transit. You're alienating the very people who are going to use the service you want. It's even a proven statement - the majority of MAX and WES riders aren't/weren't even existing riders. TriMet sees that as a badge of honor; but those riders rarely ever result in riders that use the entire system or divert non-commute trips to transit. And TriMet continues to bleed bus riders in huge numbers - they aren't going to MAX, they're going to cars (or, in some cases, bikes.)

Transit projects in the Metro region are not transit projects. They are experiments in social engineering.

"....I tend to agree with Timber Jim, whoever he is, that putting this existing public right of way (preserved in the courts) to public use as a modern short trip rail line "

Well how about a bike lane then. TOTALLY LEED certified!

He's subject to filing the Oregon SEI annual reporting form, per this list. And here's where you go to get a copy. Any takers?

If this project has to happen, why can't it be a bus running on an eco friendly designated asphalt? A road is easier to fix or reroute. Heavy load freight may need tracks for efficiency. Helicopter backup would be cheaper that this emminent domain abuse. Buses run over potholes better than my Toyota Minivan.

What is wrong with running buses on ordinary roads??

Moves a lot of people, cheaply!

(AND have them PULL OUT OF TRAFFIC WHEN THEY STOP.)

Thanks
JK

He has the dumb ideas of Mayor Adams combined with the looks and attitude of Commissioner Leonard. Kill me twice.

I suppose Homer will buy Hoffman a diamond bike pin if this outrageous project gets built; or proviide him with nice a private tax free bank account in the Caymans.

I'm with Erik on this: what's so wrong with inexpensively upgrading the existing line and running the vintage cars on it? Granted, they probably won't appeal to the gang-bangers, but the tourists would love it - and so would many commuters.

One great thing about the line is that it's scenic, and there aren't many stops.

Back to the tourists: here, we have some great possibilities - imagine taking a vintage trolley from Sucker Lake to Sucker Village, then riding the PHART (Pill Hill Aerial Rapid Transit) up to OHSU. In the summer, you disembark and hike up or down a connector trail that leads to the other trails in the area. In winter, you ski back down to the trolley line.

Sure, the ski-run might involve a little eminent domain stuff to remove a few homes, and you might need to buy a few sno-cats to groom the trails, but hey.

I wonder if they could build a ski-jump that would allow folks to shoot over I-5, with a landing-pad at the poodle park?

Here is a more comprehensive list of Jack Hoffman's business dealings, though I am sure there are a lot more. How sleazy do things have to get before the Oregon State Ethics Commission decides that a "potential" conflict of interest becomes an ACTUAL conflict? Do we have to wait until actual damage has occurred.? Does the streetcar and development have to be finished before the commission can assess what the level of damage is?

I rather assumed the idea of disclosing conflicts of interest would prevent politicians from voting on certain topics. But if the Commission is weak, then all we have is scoundrels policing themselves. How is that supposed to work? When Hoofman discloses his " potential " conflicts at meetings now, he is demonstrably irritated and annoyed that he has to do so. If he can't see it, he's been a lawyer too long. Sorry other Jack. Not only do you share names but you share professions with some scummy people.

http://lakeoswegoreview.com/opinion/story.php?story_id=132208188117146100

The notion that HW 43 is "congested" and therefore we must build an expensive rail line is completely divorced from reality. Go out to HW 43, pick obvious choke points where two lanes go down to one, and count cars at the morning peak or evening peak. Speeding is a bigger problem then congestion.

The best transit solution would be an express version of the TM #35 bus route. The time of travel would be far less than any rail line, and the cost would be minimal.

What is wrong with running buses

Are you nuts? Buses are not shiny or fun.

Are Metro transit projects really just social engineering projects or are they real estate development projects? I thought there was some statute that automatically rezoned wherever rail transit goes high density and eligible for subsidies?

Are Metro transit projects really just social engineering projects or are they real estate development projects?

Trimet's Vision (try to find the part about serving people's transportation needs!):

Our vision
To make the Portland region the most livable in the country

Portland is frequently cited as one of the best places to live in the world, and we're here to help keep it that way. Through regional partnerships and effective transportation and land-use planning, we're working to preserve the things that make this place special, like our thriving downtown, our clean air, our walkable neighborhoods and our spirit of sustainability. With 1 million more people expected in the region by 2035, transit plays an essential role in maintaining our quality of life

...Buses are not shiny or fun

They can be.
Take a look at some express buses, wifi and coffee, etc.
Would be perfect for some of our metropolitan areas.
But imagine that is not on the table for discussion,
nor is water transportation I have written about before.
It is about development projects here, not transporting people.

I wondered about the existing line and upgrading it for vintage trolleys..
Agree with Erik and Max, would be a good way to go.
Thank you Erik for all that information.

The streetcar is proposed to go down MacAdam Avenue because the folks in John's Landing didn't want the streetcar to travel the existing rail line through their neighborhood. So the line now is proposed to swing out onto Hwy 43 because otherwise the stink would have been such the thing could never have been build using the existing right-of-way. So Portland folks get their way but L.O. is still stuck with civic hedonism and legacy building.

I agree with Timber Jim that it could make for a great public advancement to build the line, but Jack has helped us all see how much Homer Williams is benefitting. One idea could be to make Homer come up with a large portion of the funding. He can pony up his own, ask his other friends to kick in, apply for federal funding dollars that may be available, etc. The message to the Portland and Lake O governments needs to be "Make Homer and his ilk more financially responsible for this you cowards."

...but back to that childish pin...please...stop the madness. I'm sorry but any grown adult male involved in politics wearing THAT looks like he needs to ride the proverbial 'short bus'.
What. A. Joke.

Several Lake Oswego to Portland Streetcar assumptions are wrong
Proponents of the $458 million Lake Oswego to Portland Streetcar, who stand to gain if costly Streetcar is selected, exaggerated benefits of the Streetcar alternative by basing their analysis on ill-founded assumptions. Consequently, the proponents’ draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) for the Lake Oswego to Portland Transit Project is misleading.
Proponents claimed exaggerated fuel saving: The Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) is the sales-weighted average fuel economy, expressed in miles/gallon, of a manufacturer’s fleet of passenger cars and light trucks. The CAFE standard mandated by the U.S. federal government is 37.5 miles/gallon for the year 2016, and 54.5 miles/gallon for the year 2025. This 5 percent average annual increase in fuel economy has been known for quite some time & is expected to continue for the foreseeable future. In spite of these federal standards which have been accepted by all auto manufacturers, proponents used 16.6 miles/gallon for vehicles on the road in the year 2035.
The average age of cars and trucks on the U.S. roads is 10.2 years. So, to compute miles/gallon for vehicles on the road in the year 2035, the CAFE standard for the year 2025 should be used. Therefore, streetcar promoters should have used 54.5 miles/gallon instead of low ball 16.6 miles/gallon to calculate petroleum consumption.
Using 54.5 miles/gallon instead of the misleading 16.6 miles/gallon will reduce petroleum consumption for the year 2035 from 4.73 million gallons/year to 1.44 million gallons/year for the bus alternative and from 4.68 million to 1.43 million gallons/year for the streetcar alternative. Thus, the streetcar alternative will save only 14,257 gallons/year rather than the 52,900 gallon/year as stated in the DEIS. Note that this 14,257 gallons/year saving is still exaggerated because it is based on low ridership in diesel bus (rather than more ridership in comfortable all-electric bus) and erroneous assumption of no growth of work from home.
Absurd investment to save fuel: To save only 14,257 gallons/year of petroleum consumption, the streetcar promoters want to spend $458 million to build streetcar (i.e. staggering $32,100 investment to save each gallon/year of petroleum). Let us put this in proper perspective: In 2006, approximately 135 million U.S. motorists consumed 75 billion gallons of petroleum. Using the same investment needed to save each gallon, it will cost $2,409 trillion.
Fortunately, there are numerous sensible alternatives. For example, if only 26 drivers change to all-electric cars, it will also save the same 14,257 gallons/year since the average drivers consume 554 gallons/year. Use of all-electric buses instead of diesel buses will also reduce dramatically the petroleum consumption.
Eventual project costs such as the streetcar always go up. If proponents magically reduce the streetcar cost, the investment will be still absurd.

Buses are greener: According to the DEIS, construction for the streetcar and bus alternative will require 11.2 million and 1.12 million gallons of petroleum respectively. This additional 10.080 million gallons required for construction of the streetcar will result in saving of only 14,257 gallons/year of petroleum. Furthermore, as fuel economy of vehicles continues to improve in the future, this exaggerated 14,257 gallons/year saving will continue to diminish. The streetcar promoters have even convinced some environmentalists that the streetcar will save fuel.
Several Lake Oswego to Portland Streetcar assumptions are wrong
Proponents of the $458 million Lake Oswego to Portland Streetcar, who stand to gain if costly Streetcar is selected, exaggerated benefits of the Streetcar alternative by basing their analysis on ill-founded assumptions. Consequently, the proponents’ draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) for the Lake Oswego to Portland Transit Project is misleading.
Proponents claimed exaggerated fuel saving: The Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) is the sales-weighted average fuel economy, expressed in miles/gallon, of a manufacturer’s fleet of passenger cars and light trucks. The CAFE standard mandated by the U.S. federal government is 37.5 miles/gallon for the year 2016, and 54.5 miles/gallon for the year 2025. This 5 percent average annual increase in fuel economy has been known for quite some time & is expected to continue for the foreseeable future. In spite of these federal standards which have been accepted by all auto manufacturers, proponents used 16.6 miles/gallon for vehicles on the road in the year 2035.
The average age of cars and trucks on the U.S. roads is 10.2 years. So, to compute miles/gallon for vehicles on the road in the year 2035, the CAFE standard for the year 2025 should be used. Therefore, streetcar promoters should have used 54.5 miles/gallon instead of low ball 16.6 miles/gallon to calculate petroleum consumption.
Using 54.5 miles/gallon instead of the misleading 16.6 miles/gallon will reduce petroleum consumption for the year 2035 from 4.73 million gallons/year to 1.44 million gallons/year for the bus alternative and from 4.68 million to 1.43 million gallons/year for the streetcar alternative. Thus, the streetcar alternative will save only 14,257 gallons/year rather than the 52,900 gallon/year as stated in the DEIS. Note that this 14,257 gallons/year saving is still exaggerated because it is based on low ridership in diesel bus (rather than more ridership in comfortable all-electric bus) and erroneous assumption of no growth of work from home.
Absurd investment to save fuel: To save only 14,257 gallons/year of petroleum consumption, the streetcar promoters want to spend $458 million to build streetcar (i.e. staggering $32,100 investment to save each gallon/year of petroleum). Let us put this in proper perspective: In 2006, approximately 135 million U.S. motorists consumed 75 billion gallons of petroleum. Using the same investment needed to save each gallon, it will cost $2,409 trillion.
Fortunately, there are numerous sensible alternatives. For example, if only 26 drivers change to all-electric cars, it will also save the same 14,257 gallons/year since the average drivers consume 554 gallons/year. Use of all-electric buses instead of diesel buses will also reduce dramatically the petroleum consumption.
Eventual project costs such as the streetcar always go up. If proponents magically reduce the streetcar cost, the investment will be still absurd.

Buses are greener: According to the DEIS, construction for the streetcar and bus alternative will require 11.2 million and 1.12 million gallons of petroleum respectively. This additional 10.080 million gallons required for construction of the streetcar will result in saving of only 14,257 gallons/year of petroleum. Furthermore, as fuel economy of vehicles continues to improve in the future, this exaggerated 14,257 gallons/year saving will continue to diminish. The streetcar promoters have even convinced some environmentalists that the streetcar will save fuel.

"He has the dumb ideas of Mayor Adams combined with the looks and attitude of Commissioner Leonard. Kill me twice."
You hit the nail on the head, Mike (the other one)! That mug is ugly!

As a matter of fact, Jack and Sam are friends and Jack often quotes or references Sam.

dm Yes, the pin makes him look silly. He got it from Earl, though, so it's special to him. So embarrassing that he's our mayor!! Won't be re-elected and probably won't run again.

drewbob: "putting this existing public right of way (preserved in the courts) to public use as a modern short trip rail line makes more sense than some of the other track projects we've seen in the area in the past few decades.
AT WHAT COST? And at what environmental damage? It won't even be in the right of way for the whole length of Macadam from the Sellwood Bridge north. It will be in the street, CAUSING the congestion.

Don't presume to lecture me about the history of this right of way. I know more about it than you ever will.
The highest and best use would be a Pedestrian/bike trail. pdxjim is right.


BoJack is right. Timber Jim is a shill. Listen to the crap he spews: "Highway 43 is congested in mornings and evenings. It helps to redevelop an incredible section of waterfront that is now separating the center of lake o from the Willamette river. Some of that area is now occupied by junky industrial uses. People will ride the thing."
NO, Hwy 43 is NOT congested. NO, people will not ride it. NO, it will not help redevelop the waterfront. Taxpayer subsidies will.

THIS IS PLAIN AND SIMPLE. This is not about transit or congestion. It is not TOD -- Transit Oriented Development. It is DOT -- DEVELOPER ORIENTED TRANSIT. For Homer Williams courtesy of his shill Jack Hoffman.

Mr. Grumpy and Jim Karlock -- it's development AND social engineering. Love you guys.

...Buses are not shiny or fun

They can be. Take a look at some express buses, wifi and coffee, etc.

The problem with Portland's anti-bus crowd is that they are comparing Portland's buses, with whatever they want.

Portland has one of the oldest, least reliable, least efficient and most polluting bus fleets in the nation. Here's even a great write-up by a TriMet Operator who made some great graphs to go along with it.

Other cities have purchased commuter buses that have successfully INCREASED bus ridership simply by being new - Seattle has them. So does Vancouver, BC. So does Salt Lake City, and Sacramento, San Francisco.

The buses are typically a MCI D4500 or D4505 bus, which externally look like a Greyhound or tour bus. Inside they have plush, reclining seats, luggage racks, reading lights...they can be equipped with Wi-Fi and even restrooms if needed, and the non-commuter configuration bus also has TV monitors (which could be used and show a morning news program, or a special transit program like TransiTV in Los Angeles). And theoretically, one could even set up a beverage bar (which is an option on tour bus configurations).

Even C-Tran has (or had) some of its regular transit buses in a commuter configuration, so they looked like any other transit bus on the outside but had the above-mentioned commuter amenities on the inside. King County Metro and Sound Transit do the same as well.

Community Transit (Snohomish County) even bought "Double Talls" - double-decker buses for commuter service. Extremely popular!

There's nothing fun about riding a 20 year old boring bus that has a leaky roof, a broken window, uncomfortable seats, no air conditioning, and probably will break down. There's nothing fun about waiting for the bus on the side of the road like a hitchhiker or a prostitute would wait. And that's exactly what TriMet is today.

With modest investments, TriMet could purchase new buses, invest in bus stops and sidewalks, and improve the bus service tremendously. In fact the $165 million spent on WES (which operates just seven hours a day, weekdays only) could have built at least four separate Bus Rapid Transit lines that operate 18 hours a day, seven days a week. We'd have bus stops that look like this.

And...TriMet would not only be increasing ridership - it'd also be decreasing operating expenses at the same time. Newer buses require less fuel and less maintenance than older buses.

NO, it will not help redevelop the waterfront. Taxpayer subsidies will.

I remember a time when Lake Oswego's riverfront was a woodchip yard, where Georgia-Pacific would transload woodchips between railroad cars and barges. It's now a park. Next to condos and apartments.

And there's no streetcar.

Riverplace was built in the 1980s on abandoned industrial land. It had no streetcar for 25 years - and only now does the Streetcar stop at its very edge, but far from its heart.

South Waterfront used to be light industrial. With a lot of businesses - most of whom had no desire to move. The city decided it had to change - and thus it bulldozed the small businesses out (many out of the city) and replaced them with empty shells of buildings, abandoned lots, developments that went bankrupt, and a lot of city-owned property. (But the Zidell barge property is still industrial in the heart of it all.) But the Streetcar is hardly instrumental to its "success" - in fact those few businesses down there actually have complained about a lack of public parking and difficult vehicle access. (So TriMet/City of Portland spent $35 million to rebuild Moody Avenue, replace a perfectly good and practically brand new streetcar line, demolish a streetcar stop, at the same time TriMet complained it didn't have any money and had to cut regional bus service. But there's always money to throw away to raise a streetcar track and a street!)

There are plentiful examples of how downtown areas have been revitalized without even a bus, much less a streetcar. If the streetcar is such a successful development tool, why are there urban renewal districts, or crazy investment schemes, or even tax breaks? If the streetcar is the catalyst of the development, then there is no need for government involvement in the actual development, including tax incentives. The developers should be lining up and building up and down these lines, and happily pay the full cost of their property taxes, the impact fees, the permit fees, and so on.

Notice how in the absence of tax incentives, there's no development along MAX. There's a LOT of vacant parcels right next to MAX stations even 25 years after the original Portland-Gresham line was built. Much of the recent development isn't even private at all - it's public buildings like the proposed East County Courthouse, the Convention Center, the Oregon State Office Building, the airport, the PCC Workforce Center, the Washington County Fairgrounds, Portland State University... Stations like Sunset TC, Beaverton TC, Millikan Way, Beaverton Creek, and Quatama all have a lot of development potential - but no development. Orenco is a failed Transit Oriented Development (it's a successful development, but it's centered around Cornell Road and parking lots.) Cascade Station was a bust - the elitist developers actually thought people would choose to live underneath the flight path of the PDX South Runway. (oops!) So it's just another run-of-the-mill strip mall filled with non-local, national chain stores - and the Swedish WalMart. And two very, very seldom used MAX stations. (One of them - the one that is now in the Target parking lot, whose main entrance is at the opposite end of the parking lot from the MAX station which is basically an abandoned corner of the parking lot) makes for a great drop-off place for the airport so one does not have to drive around in circles in the arrival/departure roadways, and there's very close parking.

Solve the traffic congestion at State and A street in Lake Oswego will reduce congestion all around.

Give us more buses at all hours and on weekends so we have a serious alternative to cars. Shiny new ones would be nice. Must be
too simple because no one at Trimet or the city of LO has thought of it yet. What does this say about Jack Hoffman and his buds?

One idea could be to make Homer come up with a large portion of the funding. He can pony up his own, ask his other friends to kick in....

You must be new to this town, Pete.

I think there are an infinite number of alternate projects that could be built at lower cost and with higher public benefit compared to the LO streetcar. But that's not the point and never has been with this project. The point has always been to spend as much money as possible to "capture" the federal match and maximize federal dollars flowing into the region to all the pols cronies and construction pals. The feds have always set up the most perverse incentives for local transit projects through their open-bucket method of distributing transit grants (through New Starts or whatever it's called now), i.e. cities that propose the most expensive transit projects (in terms of capital expenditures) generally get the biggest grants.

I think the fact that this project cannot hide behind any of the usual environmental facades (and where are the local environmentalists to protest this?) and it's about as cost-INeffective as one can possibly imagine, just shows the huge amount of inertia behind it. This will be a tough project to stop and I think the only way to stop it is by setting up legal roadblocks like the citizens of Clackamas Co. did with urban renewal to cut off the source of money for the local match. But even that battle is probably far from over. I think the only real hope is for the feds to finally sunset these perverse transit funds that encourage cities to waste so much money in the first place. Once they start blowing money on studies and public relations, selecting their favorite contractors/developers, etc. there's no turning back.

Frankly it would be best if the federal government got out of a lot of these local projects - there is at least a small contingent of Republicans that want to all but abolish the Department of Transportation - and decisions had to be decided and funded locally.

The current process of obtaining significant federal funding for local projects allows streetcar and light rail lines to be built in areas of low densities; high-maintenance roads to be built through high elevations with extensive snow removal needs; freeways through the middle of nowhere (does La Grande and Pendleton REALLY need a four-lane freeway?) - rather than towns identifying a need and then having to come up with the money themselves for it. The current process also requires so much money just to move the money around (federal gas taxes paid to the IRS, just to be returned back home), requires prevailing wage laws to pay higher than normal wages, and rules that change based upon political whim.

(and where are the local environmentalists to protest this?)

Environmental organizations are likely shielded by a 501 C3 which allows for very little political activism. How convenient!

...and maybe they don't even think there is a problem.

How in God's name did developers manage to get so many inside men planted into power positions within our Byzantine layers of local government? Or did I just answer my own question? It's like they have their own agent minding the public treasury.

...and maybe they don't even think there is a problem.

It may be that we have a mantra going on in our area that is in place with many,
and that is to save outside the UGB and therefore allows or is OK with sacrifices within.

My perception is that some people are more focused on environmental matters in far away places instead of right here. Others are so involved with just one issue there is no time or energy to help in another. Then there is the matter of funding, ways that organizations are set up, grant money, tie in with the city, etc. and other relationships.

Despite all that, I don’t see how one can live here, know of environmental destruction and be silent.

As we all know, the UGB is a scam. It applies an artificial limit on the supply of real estate with no control on prices, which simply inflates its value to where it winds up going to the highest bidder, often to individuals or property investors, or big banks from outside from outside the area. To add further insult much of it gets rezoned for "high density" making publically funded subsidies available to developers. Individuals, familes, and businesses that can no longer afford the artificially jacked up market prices simply jump over the UGB and encourage sprawl outside of it. Inside or outside of the UGB, it's a win-win for developers.

Clinamen -- This mayor, Jack Hoffman, wants it all. Foothills AND Stafford. He knows no bounds and is trying to get the UGB expanded here. He got Stafford designated "urban" in the farce Metro reserves process.

I will add - Despite all that, I don't see how one can live here, and know of quality of livability being taken and be silent.

Those who press and push for this most likely can get away from the "sacrifice zone" often enough to be able to live here.
Some neighborhoods have been protected more than others.
Scary to think that they can go into L.O. and push their agenda as well.

L.O. Resident,
How long has Mayor Jack Hoffman been a resident of Lake Oswego?

I think about 25 years

At the public hearing in LO last Tue., it was brought up by several people that there is no affordable housing planned for Foothills. The area is in a flood plain and for that and other reasons it will be very expensive to build there. The artist renderings show 4-story buildings now, but I suspect they will be higher as the need to have the development "pencil out" rears it's ugly head. The housing units built in Foothills must be as profitable as possible in order to raise the value of the URD enough to pay for the bonds used to fund the development. If there is to be affordable housing, it will be have to be subsidized, but by whom? You don't think WDW is in business to lose money do you?

With all the different pieces of the puzzle that Lake Oswegans are and will be expected to pay for one way or another, the added costs to live in LO (expanded water and sewer facilities, new streetcar, new library, TIF funding, consultants, more consultants, and changes in the comprehensive plan and codes..) are driving up living costs and consequently pushing down the value of all real estate in the city. Vulnerable residents are desperate now that the sewer bills have gone up 30%, but that isn't the end - the water bills will be going up by 30% too with the new high-capacity system in place.

The list of expensive projects lined up just to support the Foothills development is overwhelming and costly. They are being discussed and presented separately, but they all dovetail into the same goal of supporting the desired WDW development. There may also be another URD piled on top in the Lake Grove business district to widen Boones Ferry Rd. and put in a treed median that also functions as a bioswale. That Kool Aid must be pretty powerful stuff - they have all lost their senses!

Adding insult to injury seems to be an endless game they play. This is becoming a depressing place to live and many good people are talking about moving. I thought the nuttiness was all in Portland - but I wasn't paying attention to my own back yard.

One last tidbit about Mayor Jack: During the Tuesday public meeting, he called the LO police to come in just in case things got out of hand. This was at the end of the meeting when over 3/4 of the audience had gone. And this isn't the first time Jack has felt threatened enough to require police presence. What can one say about a man like this? You should watch the meetings on cable TV - LO is a pretty scary place indeed. Now THAT would make a good newspaper article.

...Adding insult to injury seems to be an endless game they play...

So true.
As I have stated before, it is not only financial abuse,
but psychological abuse as well to be treated so shabbily.
The game is very well orchestrated.
I found that being active, and writing about it as well helps me to sleep at night.
The thought that we can move is what helps somehow as the thought that we have to stay and put up with this is too painful, but in reality, it is not that easy and where are we all supposed to move to? So we keep moving out but stay in the area so to be close to family, etc. and then the game players extend their game there?
Sad to hear that Lake Grove now may be part of it. So many nice
small homes with huge trees there, what do they want to do?
Wreck those neighborhoods too?

Those citizens who want nothing to do with the serious undoing of our rights and our livability here and are silent or oblivious may find out the results of this endless game when too late.

click here:
http://www.lakeoswegoreview.com/opinion/story_2nd.php?story_id=132269883734538100#comment_section_container

and you can read what I said to Jack Hoffman at the sham of a City Council meeting where we got to testify minutes before they voted to continue with the Streetcar/Footlhills plan. GRRR.

Kathe W.
Very good testimony.
I am sorry you had to sit there and take it all in. I have been at sham meetings and it is awful.

I don't like to see this agenda being expanded all around us,
it is sad we could not have stopped the negativity in Portland.
The character of our City of Roses and what was so livable, so very sad.
I am not against change if positive, but we shouldn't be forced to live with negative changes in our community so that a few can benefit financially.

What I have mentioned before is that if those who do want "this scene" - why don't they just move to South Waterfront? Why don't the developers advocate for that being filled first instead of building more? There must be something else going on to push all this when there are so many vacancies in SoWhat. More condos are not needed. Light rail going there doesn't make sense.


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In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 113
At this date last year: 155
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269


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