Wash., Ore. Govs: Move New I-5 Bridge Forward

Fri March 05, 2010 - West Edition

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) The governors of Washington and Oregon said they want no more delays in building a new Interstate 5 bridge across the Columbia River, but are willing to convene a panel of experts to review the project.

Govs. Chris Gregoire and Ted Kulongoski responded to a Jan. 19 letter from Vancouver Mayor Tim Leavitt, Portland Mayor Sam Adams, Clark County Commissioner Steve Stuart and Metro council President David Bragdon. The four officials said they support a new bridge but the current design is unacceptable and they want more local control and a review of the design and funding.

The governors, however, said a new bridge has been discussed for 20 years. They want construction to start in 2012 on the span, which would include up to 12 lanes and an extension of Portland’s light rail to Vancouver.