Friday, August 24, 2012

Clackamas County approves new TriMet funding agreement

Clackamas County approves new TriMet funding agreement TriMet

Clackamas County commissioners in Oregon approved a re-negotiated agreement to lower the county's contribution to TriMet's Portland-Milwaukie light-rail project to $19.9 million from $25 million and approved the sale of bonds to pay the obligation.

The new agreement will save about $6.6 million over the life of the bonds, a reduction of about $330,000 in annual general fund payments. In 2010, the county committed to paying $25 million toward the light-rail project (1.6 percent of the total project cost) with payment due by September 3, 2012, or face a financial penalty. The new agreement waives the penalty clause.

The proposed agreement includes an extensive list of enhancements to be included in the Clackamas County portions of the light-rail project, including the following:

Safety and security

Upgrades around the Park Avenue light-rail Station and Park and Ride, including closed security cameras and expanded police presence coordinated with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.

Community connectivity

Improvements to make it easier for people in the area to access light rail, including new sidewalks and intersection upgrades.

Livability

Enhancements, including noise, light and vibration mitigation and landscaping and hard-scape treatments.

Design and natural area

Improvements, including extensive planting of native species and stormwater treatment.

The Portland-Milwaukie light-rail line, currently under construction, will have its southern terminus in unincorporated Clackamas County at the corner of McLoughlin Boulevard and Park Avenue. Clackamas County is one of several agencies, along with the federal government, the cities of Milwaukie and Portland, Multnomah County, Metro and the Oregon Department of Transportation, partnering with TriMet to fund the 7.3-mile line from Portland State University to Oak Grove. The new line, the second light-rail line to connect Clackamas County with the rest of the Portland metro region, is expected to open in 2015.

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