Transportation and trade

Transportation and trade
Oregon's auto import business crashes
April 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010

importilloOregon’s once-booming auto import business, already limping along at half speed after two years of recession, has crashed into another speed bump with the Toyota recall debacle.

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Exporters follow the money to China
April 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010

chinaWhile European markets have struggled with the Greek debt crisis of late, Asian economies have bounced back powerfully. That’s good news for Oregon because five of the state’s top six export markets are Asian nations.

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Scappoose wants airport
High Five
Thursday, March 25, 2010

Scappoose says the business potential of the Scappoose Industrial Airpark is being neglected.

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LO-PDX project advances
High Five
Thursday, March 25, 2010

Rail options for the Lake Oswego to Portland Transit Project are being studied.

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On The Scene: Fixing the transportation mess
On the Scene
Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Sellwood Bridge is deteriorating as questions arise over whether Multnomah County or Clackamas County is responsible for its replacement. The approval of funding for the Newberg-Dundee bypass is being criticized as a political maneuver. And the fate of the Columbia River Crossing remains unknown while the debate over its size, impact and whether it should even be built keeps its progress in limbo. In other words, the Portland area’s regional transportation governance is a big, gridlocked mess.

The City Club of Portland recently released a report titled “Moving Forward: A Better Way to Govern Regional Transportation.” Several members of the research committee – Leigh Stephenson-Kuhn, Peter Livingston and Richard Ross – presented the report this week as part of the “Crossing the Columbia: What Does It Mean?” forum held by PDXplore and the Architecture Foundation of Oregon. In front of a small crowd at the Pacific Northwest College of Art, the three representatives discussed the conclusions and recommendations the City Club had come up with to solve the tricky problem of moving people at the lowest cost and in the most effective way possible.

What’s tangling up transportation progress so much? The report found several problems with the current regional governance, such as the Oregon Department of Transportation’s control of most of the region’s transportation money (which gives the power to choose and fund projects primarily to state officials). A large chunk of the problem, the report says, also lies in the fragmentation of governance, with federal, state and local government and agencies all having an influence on transportation projects in the area. With so many jurisdictions with a stake in transportation, the result is a lack of clarity on which entity should be responsible for which parts of the system. Many decisions are made on a micro level, Livingston says, when transportation is really a regional issue.

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