Last September, Portland City Commissioner Dan Saltzman told BikePortland.org that he intendedto introduce a resolution supporting the implementation of congestion pricing ahead of any construction on the proposed Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion. Unfortunately, his resolution, slated for a vote November 30, supports congestion pricing but is missing language about the Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion.
Congestion Pricing is a fiscally responsible, climate-smart, technically-competent, and ethically just alternative to freeway expansion within the City of Portland. The numerous benefits to the region provided by successful implementation of congestion pricing – significant mitigation of recurring traffic gridlock, reliable commute times, increased relative competitiveness of transit alternatives, reduction in carbon emissions, improvement of local air quality, decreased incentive for exurban sprawl, predictable commute times for freight interests – are heavily negated by continued, unchecked expansion of lane miles of our region’s freeways and arterials.
We’ll be testifying in support of an amendment to Commissioner Saltzman’s resolution in support of prioritizing congestion pricing before freeway expansion on Thursday, November 30th, at 2:00pm. We’d love to have you sign our letter in support: Here’s our google form; we’ll officially send in our letter on Wednesday, November 29th at 5:00pm. Please join us at City Hall next Thursday if you’re able as well!
ODOT’s Value Pricing Committee
The Oregon Department of Transportation held the first meeting of the Portland Region Value Pricing Committee yesterday. The No More Freeways Coalition submitted this letter in support of congestion pricing as a policy to implement instead of expensive and unnecessary freeway expansion. We’ll be following this committee closely. stay tuned (and check out OPB’s coverage, which gives us a shoutout).
- Aaron Brown spoke with David Delk and the Open Signal show Populist Dialogues last month to discuss our opposition to the Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion.
- Sarah Iannarone spoke favorably of our campaign to stop the Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion at last month’s City Club Forum on the Future of Transportation investments in the Portland Metro Region.
- Willamette Week straight up eviscerates ODOT’s “safety” rationale for the $450 million freeway expansion, concluding that “In selling the $450 million highway project—and encountering predictable opposition in a car-unfriendly town—ODOT and city officials haven’t been able to present a justification that resonates with Portlanders.”
- Four whistleblower staff at ODOT were moved or fired, according to Salem’s Statesmen Journal.
- The Irvington Community Association’s Fall Newsletter Highlights their opposition to the Rose Quarter Freeway Expansion.
- UCLA Professor Michael Manville poses the question: “Is Congestion Pricing Fair to the Poor?“
- The Oregonian reports TriMet is punting on their 2018 Transportation Ballot Measure; let’s encourage Metro to prepare for a 2020 package that has funding for transit instead of freeways.
Our Coalition has met with State Senators, State Representatives, City Councilors, County Commissioners, Dozens of Community Advocates and Nonprofit Organizations and organized rabblerousers to show up at numerous hearings and open houses over the past four months. This is a labor of love for us, and our entire campaign to bring attention to the need to stop this freeway has been run for less than $450. As we gear up for 2018, we could greatly use some additional funding to help us host events, launch aggressive advertising campaigns, and cover our costs. Donate $10 or more and get your very own emoji-filled No More Freeways Button. We’re hoping to get $1500 to keep our website afloat, continue paying for our email service, and to cover the costs for some freeway opposition events in the year ahead.