Some were liberal, others were conservative. Some dislike light rail, others pollution. But the 15 speakers gathered near the Interstate 5 Bridge Thursday morning had one thing in common: Their concerns about the spending on the Columbia River Crossing.Made up of Oregon legislators, an Oregon Metro councilor, local business owners, real estate agents and more, the “Smarter Bridge Committee” held a press conference calling for a halt to any further funding for planning until it’s clear the states and federal government can even pay for the $3.5 billion project.About 10 supporters also stood in the morning chill, at the Vancouver Landing along the Columbia River.“We come from disparate kinds of views about the Columbia River Crossing, but we’re united in one thing — the current direction governmental systems are going is incorrect and needs to be changed,” said Oregon Metro Councilor Carl Hosticka, who emceed the event. “Please stop the bleeding.”Hosticka, who falls on the liberal side of the spectrum, later introduced John Charles of the Cascade Policy Institute, the largely libertarian think tank that is often critical of Metro’s policies.Charles said he’d prefer to see plans for a light-rail extension from Portland to Clark College eliminated from the plans than see the CRC go forward as-is. Trains, he said, will take an average of 38 minutes to reach downtown Portland, while C-Tran’s current express buses do it in an average of 18 minutes.
CRC foes of all stripes share concerns
Last Updated on: September 16th, 2019 at 2:00 am, by