Hurricane Sandy is estimated to have cost $37 billion — just in New Jersey. The Columbia River Crossing will cost $3.5 billion. Duh! Just build it.
Building the bridge now is an investment for future generations. The Tea Party crowd that runs the county is to blame for most of the dysfunction. Some C-Tran board members say they are in a fog. What? After all this time? The easiest way to screw this up is to let the politicians have control. Commuters and businesses that use the bridge daily need to unite and raise their voices over this backwards-thinking crowd that would damage the region’s economy.
Tolling works just fine in many places on the East Coast to sustain bridges and turnpikes. Columbia River Crossing officials need to refigure the light-rail route to be more effective for ridership and less intrusive to downtown businesses. Run it along I-5 to transit stations in Hazel Dell and Salmon Creek like they do in Portland along I-205 to Clackamas and I-84 transit centers. This would create more commuter ridership than running it just to Clark College. I know a longer route will cost more but it would be more effective over the long haul.
This is an investment in the future economic growth for Clark County.