Bridge replacement

           The Interstate Bridge Replacement Program [IBRP]                              Things You Should Know 
The proposed design for the Interstate Bridge Replacement Project [I-5 IBRP] calls for a massive increase in the freeway footprint over Hayden Island.   This expansion will also cost many their homes on the North Harbor along with many businesses in our community.

Below are graphics for the footprint both before and then after the I-5 Interstate Bridge Replacement Project. 

CRC 1.0 conceptual rendering looking northwest from Delta Park.
“What is happening does not feel like equity for us at all.  We are against a massive intrusion over the island.”  – Hayden Island Resident

“What do we get in exchange for this massive freeway footprint?  We get to save a minute and a half off our commute time during rush hour.  The promise to climate change and equity are only empty words on paper.” – Hayden Island Resident

                  Hayden Island Locally Preferred Alternative [LPA]

Property acquisition and highway footprint on Hayden Island, from the Columbia River Crossing’s Final Environmental Impact Statement.  New renderings show what expanded I-5 could look like in Vancouver – Bike Portland    Graphics used with permission from Jonathan Maus BikePortland 

Addressing Travel Demand, Congestion, and Climate Change Goals

The IBRP plan will add to congestion, add to carbon emissions, and destroy the community.

During a meeting with legislators, Greg Johnson, the IBR Program Administrator, responded to a question by Oregon Senator Lew Frederick, “How much time will drivers save rather than just saying congestion will be addressed?”  He referenced citizens’ dissatisfaction with the one-minute improvement in the failed Columbia River Crossing [CRC] effort.

Lew Frederick reminded the IBRP team that people value their time the most and one minute is not enough.” Johnson answered, “But we know that we cannot build our way out of congestion…”

The IBR team acknowledged the current congestion Level of Service [LOS] for the I-5 Bridge is assigned an “F“ rating. That means it is at full capacity.  The IBRP is not expected to change this current capacity rating. 

Quote from An Article in CityLab Transportation “Road Warriors”, 1/22/2022
“Vehicles generate 30% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, more than any other sector.  The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has made clear that emissions must fall drastically, lest we face runaway, catastrophe warming.”


A paper written by HINooN’s representative to the I-5 IBR Program’s Hayden/Island Marine Drive Interchange Community Working Group and HINooN’s Resolution to “Support a No-Build Option” was presented by the HINooN representative to the I-5 program’s Hayden Island/Marine Drive Interchange Community Working Group on December 7, 2021. 

Two days after the presentation HINooN received an email from Kayla Dunn, Interstate Bridge Replacement Program Communication Director.  Kayla Dunn requested a meeting with the HINooN leadership.   The requested meeting was held on January 13, 2022.  Four members from the Hayden Island Neighborhood Network attended the meeting and eight members of the Interstate Bridge Replacement Program attended the meeting.  Both parties felt the meeting was unproductive.
 HINooN stated that they are not against an I-5 replacement bridge over the Columbia River, but they are against the massive footprint over Hayden Island that will destroy our community.

Seismic Vulnerability – Fear Sells Products
“The odds of a megaquake are roughly one in 10 in the next 50 years. “

“Two years ago, Gov. Jay Inslee said “we do not have a choice” when he and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed a joint agreement to begin the Interstate Bridge Replacement Program (IBRP) in Nov. 2019. “This bridge could fall down any day, with a small seismic event,” said Inslee.

 “Yet the two Interstate Bridge structures did not fall down in the magnitude 6.8 Nisqually earthquake in 2001. Nor did the bridge fall down in the 1949 or the 1965 earthquakes. Some will point out that these earthquakes were not strong enough to trigger “liquefaction” of the soil the foundation of most bridges in the region are built on, and that is the biggest risk. 

Two conditions must exist for liquefaction to occur: The soil must be susceptible to liquefaction (loose, water-saturated, sandy soil, typically between 0 and 30 feet below the ground surface). Ground shaking must be strong enough to cause susceptible soils to liquefy,” according to the Utah Geological Survey. “

The link:  What is the seismic risk of the Cascadia Subduction Zone and earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest? – ClarkCountyToday.com

Below are a few quotes from an article written by Robert Liberty and shared by Joe Cortright in Joe’s City Observatory newspaper.
“Article from According to Oregon Public Broadcasting, ODOT’s Assistant Director Travis Brouwer claimed the I-5 Bridges:’…would likely collapse in a major earthquake.’  That sounds scary, but the trouble is there is no basis for that statement according to the technical work commissioned by…the Oregon Department of Transportation.”

A 2009 study ODOT commissioned of seismic risk to bridge structures:  Seismic Vulnerability of Oregon State Highway Bridges:  Mitigation Strategies to Reduce Major Mobility Risks.

“In the study “bridges” include overpasses, viaducts, ramps, – any elevated structure, whether over a water body or not.  The study modeled the impact of several earthquakes in Oregon: one near Klamath falls, another near Salem, a major earthquake under the West Hills of Portland and magnitude 8.3 and 9.0 Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquakes (9.5 is the highest magnitude ever recorded).  According to the study, none of those earthquakes cause the I-5 bridges to collapse.”

The link:  The shaky argument for the Columbia River Crossing | City Observatory

Below is the link for Seismic Vulnerability of Oregon State Highway Bridges: Mitigation Strategies to Reduce Major Mobility Risks. Albert Nako.


                                            Below is the paper shared with the I-5 IBRP                       Hayden/Island Marine Drive Interchange Community Working Group 12/7/2021

I am the Hayden Island Neighborhood [HINooN] representative.  We do not see how any of the complex interchange proposals will help congestion or freight movement.

The Interstate Bridge Replacement Project purpose and needs statement addresses these six concerns:

    1. Travel demand and congestion.
    2. Impaired Freight movement.
    3. Limited public transportation 
    4. Safety 
    5. Bicycle and pedestrian facilities
    6. Seismic vulnerability

The IBRP touts their concerns for equity and climate change.

The previous CRC proposal included 12 lanes which is double the current situation.  If you are planning to address the six objectives listed and still build a new bridge at the current location, we worry you will find yourself once again at a standoff between purpose & need and equity & climate change.

In 2013 it was found that adding these additional lanes would increase the environmental impact to endangered fish habitat in the Columbia River and increased air pollution to vulnerable minority communities in North Portland.  

There was also concern for noise pollution, and the increased traffic’s effect on the vulnerable North Portland population.  The operation was shut down in 2013 over many of these concerns.   

Now IBRP is again talking about equity for vulnerable populations and climate change objectives.  If you are in fact, moving forward where you left off in 2013 when the project was shut down, what are the plans to address air pollution, noise pollution, increased traffic and congestion affecting North Portland’s vulnerable populations? The question is, “How will environment impact and climate change objectives be addressed if the bridge is simply rebuilt in the current location?”

On Monday my husband and I found ourselves in Vancouver, Washington about 3 miles from our home on Hayden Island.  We were unable to get home because the I-5 bridge was closed in both directions at around 10:30 am.  We stopped by a friend’s home to wait it out.  Finally, around 4:00 pm we headed home via I-205.  With only two ways across the Columbia River to Portland and one of them closed, we found all the roads to be a real mess.  
There are currently 11 bridges that cross the Willamette River in Portland and only two bridges to take Interstate traffic across the Columbia River.  

In the matter of the I-5 Interstate Bridge Replacement Program [IBR], the members of Hayden Island Neighborhood Network [aka HINooN), a recognized neighborhood association in the City of Portland located in Multnomah County, State of Oregon, unanimously support a No-Build Option to be implemented and remain in force until a third Alternative I-5 crossing on the Columbia River, by either bridge or tunnel, is designed, completed and operational. 

Ellen Churchill
HINooN Representative
In summary, HINooN supports a No-Build Option to be implemented and remain in force until a third alternative I-5 crossing of the Columbia River, by either bridge or tunnel, is designed, completed, and operational. The KATU video taken on December 6, 2021 vividly shows what happens should the I-5 Interstate Bridge, one of only two bridges, crossing the Columbia River goes down. Congestion is worse than ever.       

Additionally, the massive footprint over Hayden Island will destroy our community. 

For a copy of the HINooN resolution presented to the IBRP send an email request to hinoon.hayden.island@gmail.com

If you feel the way we do about the IBRP, please write or call members of the Bi-State Legislative Committee working on the I-5 Interstate Bridge Replacement Project.

Bi-State Legislative Committee         
Oregon Legislative Members        
Co-Chair    Senator                 Lee Beyer                    Sen.LeeBeyer@oregonlegislature.gov,   503-986-1706
Co-Chair    Representative    Susan McLain             rep.susanmclain@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1429
                    Senator                 Brian Boquist             Sen.BrianBoquist@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1712
                    Senator                 Lynn Findley              Sen.LynnFindley@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1730
                    Senator                 Lew Fredrick              Sen.LewFrederick@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1722
                    Representative    Shelly Boshart Davis   Rep.ShellyBoshartDavis@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1415
                    Representative    Karin Power                Rep.KarinPower@oregonlegislature.gov. 503-986-1441
                    Representative    Greg Smith                   rep.gregsmith@oregonlegislature.gov, 503-986-1457

Washington Legislative Members 
Co-Chair    Senator                Annette Cleveland       Annette.cleveland@leg.wa.gov    360-786-7696
Co-Chair    Representative    Brandon Vick              brandon.vick@leg.wa.gov, 564-888-2271
Co-Chair    Senator                 Lynda Wilson             Lynda.Wilson@leg.wa.gov, 360-786-7632
Co-Chair    Representative    Sharon Wylie              Megan.Walsh@leg.wa.gov, 360-786-7924
                    Senator                Steve Hobbs                steve.hobbs@leg.wa.gov, 360-786-7686
                    Senator                Ann Rivers                  ann.rivers@leg.wa.gov,    360-786-7634
                    Representative    Jake Fey                      jake.fey@leg.wa.gov, 253-650-0916
                    Representative    Paul Harris                 paul.harris@leg.wa.gov, 360-786-7896

If you would like to be added to the HINooN list of Hayden Island residents concerned with the current I-5 Interstate Bridge Replacement Project, please
email hinoon.hayden.island@gmail.com   
HINooN meets 2nd Thursday monthlyat various locations on Hayden Island (check myhaydenisland.com for details)- 7 PM

HINooN is a part of:City of PortlandOffice of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI)North PortlandNeighborhood Services2209 N Schofield StPortland, Oregon 97217503 823 4524 For More Information about HINooN, contact:HINooN.Hayden.Island@gmail.com