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News / Clark County News

Interstate 5 Bridge program releases second set of renderings for replacement span

By William Seekamp, Columbian staff writer
Published: March 5, 2024, 8:27pm
3 Photos
This is a movable bridge option.
This is a movable bridge option. (Contributed by the Interstate Bridge Replacement Program) Photo Gallery

The Interstate Bridge Replacement Program released its second batch of visualizations for the replacement bridge at Tuesday’s executive steering group meeting.

The new renderings show viewpoints close to or on the new bridge from Hayden Island and the Vancouver waterfront. The renderings show six replacement bridge options: four single-level bridges, one stacked bridge and one with a lift span.

The project team expects to select a final design later this year before the release of the final supplemental environmental impact statement, said Greg Johnson, program administrator.

“This will be a bigger bridge, and it will have impacts on Hayden Island, but we think it will also have very positive impacts in reconnecting the island,” Johnson said.

The six replacement bridge options include: one with concrete girders; one with steel girders; two with decks held by cables; a two-level stacked version similar to the final Columbia River Crossing design with the freeway on the top level and transit and bike-pedestrian paths below; and a movable span bridge like the current I-5 Bridge.

The visuals are not a final design and don’t reflect property impacts.

Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle asked why the renderings are unattractive.

“Are you showing us the really ugly stuff so we don’t get our hopes up?” McEnerny-Ogle asked.

Program officials are waiting to fully design aesthetics until a single bridge configuration is selected, Johnson said.

The program is limited in the type of bridge because designers don’t want to intrude into Pearson Field and Portland International Airport’s airspace, Johnson said in 2023.

This prevents flashier designs like cable-stayed bridges — such as Tilikum Crossing in Portland — or suspension bridges — like the Golden Gate Bridge.

On the web

Watch the full executive steering group meeting at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEx9oox8ekQ&ab_channel=InterstateBridgeReplacementProgram.

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This story was made possible by Community Funded Journalism, a project from The Columbian and the Local Media Foundation. Top donors include the Ed and Dollie Lynch Fund, Patricia, David and Jacob Nierenberg, Connie and Lee Kearney, Steve and Jan Oliva, The Cowlitz Tribal Foundation and the Mason E. Nolan Charitable Fund. The Columbian controls all content. For more information, visit columbian.com/cfj.

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Columbian staff writer