Wednesday, October 30, 2013

3rd Bridge Oversight Team to Meet Salem Alternative on Halloween - Updated

Tomorrow, Thursday, October 31st, the Salem River Crossing Oversight Team meets to hear analysis of the "Salem Alternative."

June 24th Presentation to City Council of "Salem Alternative"
It's not clear whether the analysis will then formally become part of the draft Environmental Impact Statement. The project team is rather close with the details and information right now, and it certainly would have been nice to have the report posted so that members of the public could actually have something new to say on it during the public comment periods.

As it is, the agenda anticipates a meeting on February 6th, and hopefully no decision would be made before then. Surely this is just an "information" meeting, right? Right?

Trick or Treat:  The Halloween Agenda
N3B has posted here and here on the meeting, and they are hoping to get information on its projected cost and ability to ease congestion.

The meeting runs from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm at the Mid-Willamette Valley Council of Governments, 100 High St. SE, Suite 200, above La Capitale/Bar Andaluz.

(Bonus:  Be sure to check out the costumes! Maybe Clown,  Phantom Tollbooth, and Sexy Traffic Forecast Model?)

Update!  Here's the Sexy Traffic Forecast:

Moving the deck chairs
First off, there are serious reasons to doubt the whole traffic model.  But if you accept the model, the internal logic shows that you're not reducing congestion as much as shifting it from a higher income neighborhood to a lower income neighborhood, from West Salem to Highland.

Here's the traffic and other impacts comparison.

Here's the whole presentation to the committee.

A map and a really big map.

N3B also notes the following changes:
the Salem Alternative has morphed once again. It changed a number of times during the time the Salem City Council was considering it. Today it looked very different than it did when the Salem City Council approved it. Here are some of the major differences:
  • In the new Salem Alternative, the [Rosemont] exit off Hwy. 22 westbound is closed.
  • In the new Salem Alternative, Marine drive connects to an elevated span westbound that runs along the bank of the Willamette next to the water.
  • In the new Salem Alternative, the eastside bridgehead is elevated over Front St., not at grade.
  • In the new Salem Alternative the Oversight Team hopes to redesign Marine Drive, which traverses Wallace Marine Park, to be an arterial street -- an "expressway" as Keizer City Councilor Cathy Clark put it. (However, as presented, there are still about six streets that intersect with Marine Drive in West Salem. Some will need to have traffic signals. What kind of an "expressway" is that?)
  • In the new Salem Alternative, the bridge is not a "signature bridge" as the Salem City Council desired.
More to come....


Curt said...

4D is making a comeback. N3B successfully shifted the debate from traffic to livability. Now with the Salem Alternative, they are shifting it back to traffic. If the debate is about traffic, 4D wins and Highland is back in the crosshairs, under the cloud.

I don't think we will ever have another bridge in Salem but the collateral damage from anti-bridge movement has likely cost Salem the chance to see a livable, multi-modal downtown in my lifetime.

Jim Scheppke said...

Hmmm. What is conspicuously absent from the CH2M HILL presentation is the cost of the Salem Alternative. Are we going to have to wait until February to get a clue about that? I hope not. Supposedly CH2 was going to spend $300,000 to do the analysis of the Salem Alternative. Maybe that just wasn't enough dough to get a cost estimate. So let's spend some more of that free Federal money!!

Anonymous said...

"A revised version of a proposed third bridge across the Willamette River in Salem would cost between $350 million and $400 million, but also would result in closure of the Rosemont Avenue off-ramp on Highway 22 westbound."

According to a piece just posted to the SJ...More to come, obviously.

Curt said...

According to N3B the ramps in Highland and over Edgewater are back too. Highland was almost out of the cloud but now its likely back. Why would any councilor want to go to bat for N3B after they attacked the only ones that were listening to them? And "more compact development in the core"? That was opposed with just as much voracity as the bridge. If Salem activists are going to make downtown unbuildable, why wouldn't Mt. West want another bridge to their property in West Salem?

And I thought this might be Salem's "Mt. Hood freeway moment". Salem did exactly the opposite!

Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

updated with clips

Curt said...

The shifting of traffic was evident with all the alternatives in the DEIS. Its not new information that is going to persuade anyone.

From Clem's comments in the SJ, it sounds like his bridge caucus is back together (with the mayor), ready to approve this latest version of 4D. Without any support for the Salem Alternative, very little stands in their way.