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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 31, 2013 10:47 AM. The previous post in this blog was When a bus runs a red light with a camera.... The next post in this blog is Taxes in Washington State: simple and unfair. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Another $450 million for the CRoCk?

That's what they're talking about down in Salem -- another half billion or so for the bridge project that's burned through around $150 million already, with nothing but hot air to show for it.

A curious reader wants to know how many Tri-Met personnel are working on "planning" for the bridge, which may or may not wind up having train tracks on it. And where are the funds coming from to pay the Tri-Met people? No wonder they're cutting bus service.

And meanwhile, the darn thing is still too low.

Comments (13)

Great nickname--CRoCk ;)

This POS project is the real "bridge to nowhere".

Apropos of the bridge height, the planners are reasoning by analogy, saying that if a train system that works 90% of the time still provides service to 90% of its customers, then a bridge that provides 90% of the clearance that the river users require still lets 90% of each ship through.

They could have already built a sturdy bridge out of the cash wasted on "planning to plan".

I don't get it. How does one spend 150 million without pouring any cement? "Outreach?"

You don't need outreach (propaganda and marketing) if the bridge is obviously necessary.

Have the purchased a bunch of land to build it or something? I just wonder what do we own for our 150mil?

If I understand it right. A bridge build to the height specified by the Corps of Engineers, it won't accommodate light rail. What a shame.

If they really need better traffic flow, I'd think they could bore a tunnel from Marine Dr to the dip just south of Hazel Dell and come out money ahead. All of those communters are coming from all over Clark Co anyway

However, that would mean no train to downtown Vancouver and Clark College, which the locals don't want anyway

More ecologically sound (no stirring up the river and disrupting salmon) the bridge is still high enough and they could replace the existing spans eventually (isn't it good for another 50 years, engineering wise?)

I heard a funny name for CRC: The Columbia River Double Cross. But why do Oregonians and Portlanders continue electing spendthrift, "so-called" smart people to the legislature and Portland city hall? Yesterday, we find out in the Willamette Week the PDC gave $50k to a church to open a restaurant bar. OSPIRG rates the City of Portland a D minus in budget transparency. Portland's city auditor says the Portland transportation bureau wastes much of its multi-million dollar yearly budget on non-basic items. This is what remains in the aftermath of (the newly appointed executive director of the City Club) Sam Adams and Randy Leonard. The WW also reports Leonard is now trying to get special favors on a permit necessary to sell his house, after years of his mobster like rule of the Permits Bureau. Salem is just as bad with the new crew of legislators coming in. Representative Kotek's highest priority is to add nearly half a billion dollars in state debt to fund a bridge with a choo choo train Vancouverites don't really have much want for. Golden boy Wheeler wants to add another half billion dollars to state debt in order throw even more government largesse to state public higher education, which will mostly just end up causing the cost of tuition to escalate even faster (more demand but not much new supply) and student debt for subpar degrees to increase even faster. Meanwhile, the Teachers union and state/local government employees want more of the revenue pie while blasting any idea of stabilizing PERS costs. Kitzhaber is trying to slow this by trotting out his education Czar Rudy Crew, but I don't give much odds of this deferral technique working. Instead, our so-called leaders like Jules-Bailey, Rosenbaum and Burdick will get their way, and refer big tax hikes to the voters this November; and let the public employee unions trot out the children as props and carpet bomb the airwaves and other media with save-the-children-tax-hike pleas. And like a bad movie continuously played, there's a fair chance Oregonians will fall for this jive once more.

Salem political party animals bending over backwards for the Limbo Bridge: CRoCk around the clock....

Chubby Checker ~ "Limbo Rock"
from "Cameo Parkway - The Best of Chubby Checker"

Oregon has linked this thing to light rail and that means, like the convention center luxury hotel, it'll never die because too many local political careers have sold their souls for it.

Over three-fourths of the cost and half the opposition to this bridge would disappear overnight if they dropped the light rail component.

Nobody (except the Oregonian Editorial Board) is buying the whole color of money argument anymore. I expect that CRC backers will need Republican votes in both houses to pass funding for CRC + Light Rail. Someone needs to tell the Republicans that doing so will guarantee a primary opponent.

There's no excuse for any Fiddling while Rome burns.

Every City Councilor and County Commissioner is obligated to stand up and be counted on this boondoggle.

Their citizens are overwhelmingly opposed to this CRoCk that will suck up funding for many future projects and add taxes and fees without voter approval.

They should all take a council/board vote on opposing the CRoCk and reveal where they stand.

At present, nearly $200 million has been "invested" over nearly a decade in planning and design. The first design was disapproved by USCG due to its 95-foot clearance, and the improved design at 110 feet won't get a permit either.

The low clearance is needed for the same reason that the PMLR bridge over the Willamette is low-clearance: light rail can't handle the increased gradient.

The actual number spent so far is $170 million, and that has gone to creating an environmental impact statement, designing two different bridges, and lobbying the governments who have to approve. This project will spend $1.7 bilion improving five interchanges that will feed into an already-congested I-5. It is supposed to reduce congestion, but every workday morning, less than two miles from the river, at the Delta Park interchange, the five lanes going south off the bridge and the lane going south off Marine Drive (that's six lanes) will narrow to three lanes, creating a massive traffic jam that will back up onto the new bridge. The light rail plan simply extends the Yellow Line, which will have ten stops between the closest of three Vancouver stations and downtown Portland -- a trip of 38 minutes according to the CRC staff, which compares to less than 20 minutes on a C-Tran express bus and less than 15 minutes from Vancouver Station to Union Station on Amtrak. The Final Environmental Impact Statement says that in 2030, the key traffic modeling year, some 37% of the trips will be taken by light rail. Can't you just see all those people in Battleground, Ridgefield and La Center driving to the three parking lots (to be built at a cost of $167 million) next to the stations, getting out of their cars, walking to the station, waiting for a train and then taking the train to a station where they will transfer to a bus to get to their job?
If you use I-205 and the Glenn Jackson Bridge, prepare to be swamped by the commuters who don't want to pay $1500 a year or more in tolls and will take a short drive to use I-205 and the Banfield -- the Glenn Jackson can't be tolled. But don't worry, the project can't be financed (can't win in Clark County, in Olympia or by the two members of Congress in whose district the project sits). Coast Guard permit seems highly doubtful. This $3.4 billion project, the biggest boondoggle in state history, has the support of organized labor and the business lobby here. What a joke.


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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
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Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
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Conundrum, White 2013
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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
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Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
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James Joyce - Dubliners
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Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
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Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
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Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
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Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
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Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
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Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
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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
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David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
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Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

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Total run in 2016: 155
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In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
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In 2010: 125
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In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

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