By Peter Robison, Bloomberg News
December 19, 2014 12:17 p.m.
SEATTLE — If, in some great museum of American public discourse, there's a gilded pedestal reserved for the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, then way in the back, in a darkened room that no one tells the docents about, you might find a cardboard diorama of the Benton-Rivers Encounter.
The latest update of Clark County's long-range Regional Transportation Plan includes a project that goes something like this: Replace the Interstate 5 Bridge between Vancouver and Portland, rebuild much of the nearby freeway and connect high-capacity transit to Vancouver, all for about $3.3 billion.
A public gathering next week will celebrate this year's demise of the Columbia River Crossing project, and an award recently given to a group that has advocated for a third bridge across the Columbia River.
Republican Clark County Commissioner David Madore has called his proposal for an east county bridge across the Columbia River an ideal fit for the community, a viable and cost-effective way of relieving cross-state congestion.