Second influx from American Rescue Plan Act will continue research on a new bridge
The Oregon Department of Transportation has given the Port of Hood River another $5 million to further the efforts of replacing the Hood River-White Salmon Interstate Bridge. ODOT allocated the money after Oregon HB5006 was passed on June 30. Sen. Chuck Thomsen and State Rep. Anna Williams were credited as key factors in securing the funds. Bridge Replacement Project Director Kevin Greenwood praised them for their adherence.
“If not for their strong leadership and commitment to the project, our prospects would look less promising than they do today,” said Greenwood. The port extended Greenwood’s contract an additional three years. A promising sign in the efforts to build a new bridge.
In May, Greenwood presented a report to the Port of Hood River Commissioners. In his announcement he laid out a plan that includes four phases. Awaiting the Final Environmental Impact Statement, it is expected that $16.25 million will be needed between 2021 through 2023 to stay on track. The Final EIS is scheduled to be presented later this year. Following the completion, the phases following will be dependent on the available funding. Along with Greenwood’s new contract, the port has extended agreements with lobbyists to advocate for increased financial input.
The most recent round of funds will go towards “establishing an initial finance plan, confirming the bi-state bridge authority, acquiring needed right of way, beginning permitting, and completing traffic surveys,” according to a press release from the Port of Hood River on July 7.