Pumping CO2

CO2, i.e., Connect Oregon 2, the expected follow-on from Governor Kulongoski to his $100M lottery-funded transportation package from last session, is apparently only the beginning in the minds of some regional leaders.

The Daily Journal of Commerce is reporting that business and government leaders are looking for a broader transportation package from the next legislature.

3 responses to “Pumping CO2”

  1. I’m still surprised with all the transportation innovations that have come from Oregon that variably priced HOT (High Occupancy/Toll) lanes aren’t common here. They’re a great way to pay for additional lanes that allow for more users, including buses, carpools, and those willing to pay.

    The Reason Foundation (I think I have that right) did studies that showed how metro areas can add a complete HOT network backed simply by the 35 year revenue, which allows for predictable bus times, immediately creates a BRT network, and allows those who need to travel quickly to do so.

    It seems that if Oregon wants a low-cost way to expand it’s roadways, they’d cite projects like San Diego’s I-15 as an example of a community using a smart growth plan, but still working to improve it’s roads at the same time.

    Having lived in San Diego when the community voted for a 1/2% sales tax increase to pay for a large trial segment, it seemed like the easiest sell of the full transportation package it was a part of. It helps transit users as well as freeway users by removing some cars and busses from the general purpose lanes, and created funding to keep improving I-15’s GP lanes with additional auxillary lanes, in addition to interchange improvements.

  2. My sense is that as long as the public perceives the choice as being toll or no-toll, they’ll naturally choose no-toll. If it became a toll or an increase in gas tax or motor vehicle registration or something like that, tolls would look a lot more attractive to most people (assuming, of course, that the spin-meisters don’t get a hold of it!)

    I think I read that the toll on the original bridge in 1960 was 25¢. In today’s dollars that $1.44 if I did the math correctly (576%). Of course I’m sure people were happy when the toll was discontinued but they were probably happier that the bridge was built in the first place. It would be interesting to know how much traffic volumes changes when the toll was discontinued.

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