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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 24, 2013 7:45 AM. The previous post in this blog was Priorities on parade. The next post in this blog is Only in Portlandia. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Sunday, March 24, 2013

The fix is *really* in on Washington side of the CRoCk

The people trying to stop the ridiculous light rail bridge between Portlandia and the 'Couv really had their panties in a knot on Friday, as the governor of the State of Washington came down to his southern border to rally the troops for the pork. The meeting wasn't open to the public; only bleating sheep were admitted.

Between that and the hiring of the CH2M Hill guy to help grease the skids, there's little doubt that the Powers That Be are determined to blow whatever billions it takes to build the thing.

It's too bad it couldn't be a simple replacement freeway bridge, at a height that works for river traffic. But no. This is Portlandia, Land of Goldschmidt and Earl the Pearl. Land where the Bechtels and the CH2Ms and the Stacey & Witbecks take future generations out and strip them of their financial future. All for trains and cr-apartments. Tragic, really.

It's funny how the Washington guv says that light rail on the bridge is "non-negotiable." With whom is he "negotiating" -- common sense? The majority of his constituents?

Comments (20)

If this unnecessary and wasteful bridge is to be built, at incalculable sacrifice to other, better uses of public funds, then light rail is really its only raison d'etre.

THAT'S the Portlandia way of "negotiating".

"Public input", "Inclusive", "Multiple Users", "Public Testimony", "Voter Mandate", "Diverse Stakeholders".... ALL just liberal group speak. Dissenting views go down the memory chute. Orwell would be proud.

Why stop at one bridge?

After all this really is a double-crossing...

Why of why didn't anybody consider putting light rail over the Glen Jackson Bridge rather than trying to gerryrig it over I-5?

For that matter, there's already a perfectly good rail bridge. Why not retrofit that bridge to carry light rail as well?

Either option would probably be less expensive and more sensible and neither would impact river traffic.

a perfectly good rail bridge

Not. This is in fact the bridge that really urgently needs to be replaced.

One more thing: all this talk about the CRC as "bridge" really overlooks the fact that the river crossing represents only about 30% of the project. The rest -- 70%!! -- involves paving over many acres in both states with expanded freeway and ramps.

The rail bridge needs help? Then all the more reason to kill two birds with one stone, methinks.

It is amusing to hear all the lip service hypocrisy coming from the political bureaucracy “We all need to share the sacrifice” and “Those who use the bridge need to help pay for it” and on and on with the so-called fairness issues. So why then is all the talk of tolling along with congestion pricing aimed only at the highway users instead broadening the base and including both bicyclists and transit riders in a pay to use picture? The stand alone bicycle infrastructure has a $40 million price tag plus an undisclosed dollar amount hidden within the connecting roadway infrastructure budget. Those dollars should come from bicyclists - not motorists. Likewise, Federal Transit Administration dollars (siphoned from the Federal Highway Trust Fund) are targeted to fully fund light rail as opposed to a 50 Fed – 50 local split because the highway portion of the project is replacing the local match dollars. Therefore, “equity, farness and sharing the sacrifice” all require that transit passengers help pay for that local match with an extra charge for using the crossing. Consequently, the message the political bureaucracy continually spewing is all about social engineering – deliberately and discriminately misleading the public with their tolling scenarios.

Reading through the comments on the Seattle Times tells me that residents up there are starting to see what a scam light rail is as well.... and they actually have a much better system.

The government is owned by the elites.

The elite's are the ones that make the most money off these boondoggles, of course they want it to go on.

Tax payer funded boondoggles are the best way for the elites to get richer, easy money basically.

As long as the government is owned by the elites the citizens are not going to have a say in anything.

Keep voting for the Republicrats and it will never change.

Dempublicans are worse, Al.

The government is owned by the elites.

D's and R's!!

Can we count a few who are not in that camp?

There is no shame. How they can look the people in the face is beyond me. A private meeting yet concerning our public dollars!!

Dempublicans are worse, Al.

Nah, the just pass the ball (blame) back and forth and behind the closed doors they are all close pals and scheme against the public.

Clackamas County Chair Lynn Peterson is being paid to knowingly harm her own county.

She did so as Kitzhaber's transportation adviser and is doing so now at the helm of WA Transportation.

Read the letter she wrote about the CRC when she was chair and wonder where her concerns are now.

"The businesses and industries in Clackamas County...cannot afford
additional congestion or decreased reliability on the 1-205 "

"..this project is beginning to collapse under the weight of unresolved community concerns and expectations."

", these mega-projects do not reflect the priorities of the communities we are elected to serve."

", we have grave concerns about a funding strategy for the Columbia River Crossing that prioritizes it above all other regional transportation investments."

"Removing a bottleneck on the 1-5 bridge and moving it to the 1-5 in the Central City is not a viable solution, and the region is then forced to make additional difficult and unrealistic choices."

"We have been watching with great concern as many of the project
partners have not been able to identify solutions to these very serious community issues."

That was then?

Apparently Peterson's self interest has caused her to abandon all concerns for her own county.

And now she is trying to build "Trust" in Washington?

New Washington Department of Transportation Leader to Work on “Building Trust”

March 24 Tacoma News Tribune link at

“We’re going to work on building trust with the citizens of Washington,” Peterson said in an interview Thursday. She started by organizing a review of agency decision-making on megaprojects, although her choice of reviewer immediately came under scrutiny."

I meant to start the previous post with "Former" Clackamas County Chair.

I still think there has to be some kind of federal pressure coming from somewhere, at least from the present administration. Just since 2008, the officials who keep advancing this unpopular juggernaut are simply too persistent and too confident, there's too much smirky self-assurance, as if they know something big that the rest of us aren't supposed to know yet, that what the people want is irrelevant, that this is going to happen whether anyone wants it or not. It's like the slow unveiling of an overthrow that's already quietly taken place... or maybe it's more like the Borg, a sort of "Light Rail Borg".

For that matter, there's already a perfectly good rail bridge. Why not retrofit that bridge to carry light rail as well?

The railroad bridge is fine - it's just that since the Interstate Bridge was rebuilt (in the 1950s) with the "hump" many barges can easily clear the Interstate Bridge without a lift - but no way to navigate under the BN bridge without an extremely sharp S turn to line up with the swing-span opening.

Of course, building a hump on the BN bridge is not going to happen - cars and trucks can easily navigate a 5% grade but trains not so much...

So the idea is to build a lift span further south on the BN bridge, which would replace the swing-span (which would actually remain but either inoperable or just used for emergencies) which would only require a slight turn to either go under the hump of the Interstate - or to the lift span of the Interstate...

As for "retrofitting"...the BN bridge could accomodate commuter rail, no retrofitting needed. Anyone who has been to Chicago or San Francisco or New York has seen commuter rail in action. Even Seattle, Vancouver (BC), Los Angeles, San Diego, and Salt Lake City have commuter rail systems (not the sorry excuse we have called WES)... Imagine commuter trains originating in Kelso and Washougal, taking commuters to Portland each morning and returning each evening...on tracks that already accomodate Amtrak trains that travel at 79 MPH. All that would be needed is the commuter rail equipment, and some basic station facilities...

I didn't realize the BN bridge over the Columbia was still a swing span. They replaced the swing span over the Willamette up near St. Johns with a lift span maybe 20 years ago to address water navigation issues.

Upgrading the existing rail bridge to include transit rail sounds like a no-brainer, but then I suppose there wouldn't be quite as much federal pork for officials to distribute to their supporters that way, and less reason to impose restrictions on inter-state travel between Oregon and Washington.

Less reason to begin implementing tolls all over the area?

"Upgrading the existing rail bridge to include transit rail sounds like a no-brainer." That is of course if BNSF is open to the idea, considering the amount of rail traffic already on that line and for how long the bridge would be off-line for renovations.

The method would be to build a new four-track rail bridge with a lift span, with two tracks belonging to BNSF and two tracks belonging to TriMet. When the new rail bridge is complete, the current rail bridge would be removed. The rail bridge is even older than the first Interstate Bridge and is ready to be replaced.


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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
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Conundrum, White 2013
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The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
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
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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: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
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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