Well, the schedule's been adjusted again!
Last month they adjusted the time for a theoretical end of a "Record of Decision" from January 2017 to May 2017. They also added a bit more detail and a couple of milestones.
For the full flavor of the delays, here are several official project schedules in order:
|Original schedule from 2006 had|
Record of Decision in early-2009!
|Out to at least May 2016|
from Dec 2014 Funding Workshop Presentation
|Schedule pushed out again to January 2017|
|The latest one for May 2017|
|Updated - Wait, there's a new one!|
The May 2016 milestone looks a little interesting: "Submit Re-Eval to FEIS for Review." Does this mean a new opportunity for public comment on a substantial revision on the draft Environmental Impact Statement arising from the "Engineering Refinements on the Preferred Alternative" aka the Salem Alternative? Is this only an internal review? And if so, who performs it? ODOT only or when does FHWA get involved again. Public communication about the project, as N3B has repeatedly pointed out, has just dried up.
(The Citizen's Guide to the NEPA doesn't appear to address this, so a bit of basic research didn't turn up an answer.)
Maybe the exact answers don't matter - but that looks like a window worth close attention.
There is no milestone or detail about the land use approvals. Which will plainly demand close attention.
And of course the TSP amendments, for which N3B is getting ready.
There's no "smoking gun" here with the new schedule delay, but it's a painful reminder that this project is costly, risky, and ultimately unneeded. It's a waste, and we should just pull the plug already.
Update, February 28th
There's a new new update!!!
The mystery milestone, ""Submit Re-Eval to FEIS for Review," is pushed out from May 2016 to October 2016.
That appears to be the primary substantive change.