Lars Larson: Boondoggle Bridge requires billions

By Lars Larson,
NW and national radio host

I hear plenty of foolish celebration of the news that Oregon & Washington’s latest attempt to bridge the Columbia River for Interstate five just got a 600 million dollar gift from the already broke Biden administration.

What a fraud on the taxpayers, just like the Columbia River Crossing that failed after wasting 200-million.

The proposed new bridge, with a price tag north of 7 billion, is no bigger than the current bridge, despite big time growth in traffic.

Second, the bridge as proposed is 60 feet short of what the U.S. Coast Guard requires for river traffic and the Coasties have veto power over the project.

So far, they say “NO”.

Add to that, plans to spend almost 2 billion on the light rail portion of the bridge already rejected by the public.

And the plan to raise one-third of the price tag from tolls designed to punish commuters and drive the poor and middle class off the freeways altogether.

ODOT has promised funding of the project, yet this 3 billion dollar agency claims its so broke, it lacks just a few million bucks to plow snow this winter.

And bridge advocate John Ley points out that traffic congestion on I-5 is forecast to double in less than 20 years, and 50 percent of that traffic will be doing 20 miles an hour or less…and that’s WITH the new bridge.

We should just call this thing, “Boondoggle Bridge 2 point oh”.