Friday, Nov. 12, 2021
News & Notes
How much is Oregon getting from the infrastructure funding package?
   WEA's Transportation Committee had the opportunity to talk with the Oregon Department of Transportation's Senior Federal Affairs Advisor and Tribal Liaison Trevor Sleeman about Congress' recently passed infrastructure funding package.
   Sleeman explained how Congress was due to reauthorize funds for basic transportation maintenance and improvement projects, but the passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will stream even more money to the states.
   Oregon is expecting to see $1 billion in added funds over the next five years for highways and special programs, which is a 38% increase in what it would normally receive.
   Sleeman said public transit will have a boost to its funding by $200 million, a 35% increase.
   The package also has more than $100 billion in grant funding opportunities for the nation's roads, transit, rail, airports, ports, and other modes.
   He said in order to receive grants, they will need to be competitive and have compelling grant applications.
   The funding also includes money for bridge replacements, electric vehicles (including buses), charging stations, resiliency, safety, bike, pedestrian, and broadband programs.
   President Biden is expected to sign the bill on Monday.
   To see the slide deck from Sleeman's presentation, click here.
Shining a light on WEA member's transportation projects
   The Chairman of WEA's Transportation Committee Frank Angelo noticed an opportunity about a month ago when he looked around the WEA Zoom meeting.
   He saw a number of planners and firms represented around the virtual table, and this month Angelo decided part of the Transportation Committee meeting agenda should be dedicated to highlighting a project a WEA member would want to share.
   3J Consulting's John Howorth and Gregg Weston stepped up to be the first firm to share a project.
   Howorth and Weston shared information about a project their firm has been working on for Washington County - the Walker Road Phase 3 project near 173rd and 185th avenues.
   Weston talked about the project and how the road passes over Willow Creek and a tributary, bringing some unique challenges in replacing a culvert and providing a water quality bioswale for runoff.
   WEA wants to thank 3J Consulting for its participation in this new Transportation Committee segment.
   To learn more about the Walker Road Phase 3 project, click here.
Tigard finalizing plans for the area around Washington Square
   Planners for the City of Tigard have released a draft of their project update for the area around Washington Square, also known as the Washington Square Regional Center (WSRC).
   Visioning for this area started in 1999, but planners in 2020 decided it needed an update to its plan.
   Tigard Senior Planner Susan Shanks said in an email, "This document captures the policy recommendations from the WSRC Final Report. It is meant to guide the future of the WSRC over the next 20 years."
   Shanks met virtually with WEA's Land Use & Housing Committee earlier this year about the planning effort.
   This draft comes after taking public input.
   It has recommendations for housing, business, transportation, and land use.
   The draft encourages a more walkable, dense, and thriving area with commercial development and high density housing up to 12 stories.
Odds & Ends
  • During his presentation to the Transportation Committee (above) Trevor Sleeman was asked if the federal infrastructure funding package would replace the need for tolling on I-205. The answer was no. By clicking here, you can weigh in on the amendment to Metro's Regional Transportation Plan that would allow tolling on I-205.

  • Washington County Land Use & Transportation is reporting about effects of the supply chain hindering road work, including winter de-icing. To read more, turn to its newsletter.

  • Hillsboro is hosting an online open house and looking for public input for the area of SE 10th Avenue and Baseline. To learn more, click here.

  • Has someone you know been caring for family and wants to return to the outside work world, but worries about the gap in work experience on their resume? Intel has created a new program for those coming back to the workforce. It's a 16-week paid returnship with mentoring. Click here to learn more about this unique program.

  • 3J Consulting is a collection site for a toy drive benefiting foster children. To learn more, click here.

  • We've all heard the stories of babies who didn't quite want to wait to make it to the hospital for their birthday. Below is a story about baby Nash, whose parents had to make a mad dash up I-84 from Hood River, and the Providence EKG tech who helped Nash enter the world. See their story below.
Events coming up
Wed. 11/17 at 12:00 p.m. - The Land Use & Housing Committee will meet virtually with Hillsboro's Economic and Community Director Dan Dias. All members are welcome to attend.

Th. 11/18 at 8:00 a.m. - A Virtual Forum with Economist Josh Lehner. To register

Fri. 11/19 at 7:30 a.m. - The Government Relations Committee will meet virtually. Please note the change in the meeting date. All members are welcome to attend.

Th. 11/25 & & Fri. 11/26 - Thanksgiving weekend. The WEA laptops will be closed.

Wed. 12/8 at 7:30 a.m. - The Transportation Committee will meet virtually. All members are welcome to attend.