SW Corridor Light Rail Project is put to bed, but Oregon officials hope for another awakening

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
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Three rail bridges in Moorhead, N.D., will not be complete until mid-2022.

With Oregon voters turning down Measure 26-218 on Election Day, the SW Corridor Light Rail Project has now been officially laid to rest.

TriMet General Manager Doug Kelsey told the steering committee on Nov. 16 that the project would have received $975 million if the payroll tax had passed. Without the funding the project has been moth-balled.

Kelsey says he anticipates officials taking on the project some time in the future, and TriMet is still committed to completing the Federal Environmental Impact Statement for the project so it is shovel-ready. The TriMet leader has already been in touch with L.A. Metro CEO Phil Washington, who will serve on President-Elect Joe Biden’s transportation policy advisory team. The hope is the Biden administration will push through a massive infrastructure bill that will help fund transit projects.

SW Corridor Project Director Leah Robbins says the design and planning that went into the new corridor to solve stormwater issues and provide safer ways to bike and walk can still be put to use without the project breaking ground.

Many are blaming the pandemic for the loss at the ballot box.

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Categories: Commuter/Regional, Passenger, Rail News, Railroad News, Rapid Transit/Light Rail, Track Construction
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