I-5 Columbia River Crossing WA-OR project stumbles on - now hit by big CDM Smith ‘diversion’ estimatesBy Peter Samuel on October 30, 2013
2013-10-29: The I-5 Columbia River Crossing project is a mega toll project in considerable trouble. Oregon is trying to continue the $2.5 billion project without much active involvement by Washington state on its northside. The state legislature in Washington declined to continue funding its share of project development last summer and the project office, in scaled down form is now solely dependent on Oregon state support.
Oregon is pushing ahead with a plan for road use charges (RUC) with a Road Usage Charge Summit scheduled for November 13 to 15 in Portland. The pursuit of a simple, single RUC system in Oregon has proven a dead-end. After two pilot programs and years of public debate Oregon DOT is pursuing a diversified approach allowing drivers many options for the charges they pay and the technology used.
Some topics for the 2013 Oregon Summit:
- objectives and policy implications of the Road Usage Charge Program
- proposed system architecture
Oregon legislature enables road use charge (RUC) of 1.5c/mile to start as voluntary scheme July 2015
2013-07-08:The Oregon legislature has passed SB810 authorizing up to 5,000 vehicles' owners to pay a 1.5c/mile, 0.9c/km road use charge (RUC) and get equivalent gasoline tax refunded. The bill passed the Oregon senate 24 to 6 and the state house 48 to 12. The governor has supported the plan and is considered certain to sign the bill into law.
2013-02-08: A bill (HB2696) is advancing in the Oregon state legislature to support a proposed investor-financed tollroad - the Coastal Parkway - on the southernwestern part of the Portland metro area. Bob Youngman of Coastal Parkway LLC says the group should be able to move forward if the law passes, and he thinks it has a good chance of passing.
Based on requests from a number of potential proposers, ODOT is extending the deadline until Tuesday, April 17th midday PST for RFP #24965.
An announcement says: "Although there are some tight deadlines and other factors that prohibit a lengthy extension, ODOT's hope is that another few days will help in preparation for Proposals for RFP #24965; Road Usage Charge Pilot Program."
see RFP at http://orpin.oregon.gov/open.dll/welcome?language=En)
On the project: http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/RUFPP/rucpp.shtml
An impressive 28 companies have officially expressed interest in the Oregon-organized Road Use Charge Pilot Project (RUCPP), designed to demonstrate operation of various RUC (road use charge) technologies. This makes them eligible to make proposals and to seek contracts to participate.
Lightrail folly exposed - isn't high capacity even for Big Events, nor at transit oriented developmentsBy Peter Samuel on May 10, 2011
Think of the ideal circumstances where lightrail might be competitive with a car: (1) a Big Event with large masses of people at one destination (2) expensive or scarce parking at the Big Event (3) blank slate developments planned in detail as transit oriented.
A group of local businessmen, engineers and roadbuilders in Oregon are developing an approximate 20km (12 mile) $350m to $400m tollroad project designed to improve connections between Portland and the coast. Called the Coastal Parkway the project would provide a high quality connection between I-5 and the 99W or Southwest Pacific Highway near Dayton. They hope to get a toll concession from the state under its Public Private Partnerships law of 2009.
Oregon DOT's Mileage Fee report is the most useful report on surface transportation in many years. By contrast, two "national commissions" on US surface transportation policy that reported recently were useless - proposing more of the same mishmash of corrupt favor trading and brain-dead 'planning' that has got our transportation into the mess it is today.
A small toll plaza off I-84 in the little town of Hood River on the Columbia River in Oregon is the first in the state to do electronic tolling. They now have five months experience using sticker tags, and the Port of Hood River finance director Linda Shames says they have been "very well received."