(December 19, 2013) – Commissioner Steve Novick posted a letter, cosigned by Mayor Charlie Hales, to Santa Claus on the Thursday before Christmas at Lloyd Center Mall. On their wish list? The funding for a number of badly needed transportation projects. Basic street maintenance, neighborhood greenways and safety measures, to name a few. Below is a copy of the letter in full. Is there something you think they ought to have included? Share it with us by tweeting to us @PBOTInfo with the hashtag #12dayspdx. See the full #12dayspdx campaign, sing along with us, and share your ideas.
We hope you will agree that Portland has been a good city this past year. We hope you will be able to give her something she desperately needs: funding for her transportation priorities.
As a start, it would make the people of Portland very happy if you could find a way to fill our stocking with (in no particular order):
$850 million to address our basic street maintenance needs.
$58 million to fund the elements of the Outer Powell Concept Plan.
$23 million to complete the projects on the East Portland in Motion priority list.
$30 million for maintenance and improvement of our signal network to the latest technology.
$2.5 million for a historically and aesthetically appropriate replacement for the safety barrier on the Vista Bridge.
$2 million a year to clean our street signs, making them more readable and improving safety
$1 million a year in grants for community uses of unpaved streets, including community gardens, mulched paths and other community defined projects
$30 million to build the North Portland Greenway Trail, connecting downtown, Lower Albina, St. Johns and Kelley Point Park
$50 million for sidewalks that will make it safer to walk to school, to the bus, and elsewhere, especially in East Portland and Southwest
$19 million to implement the Capitol Highway Plan in Southwest
$15 million for a North Rivergate Boulevard overpass over the UPRR tracks in North Portland
$200 million for improvements to gravel streets
$20 million for 10 years of frequent bus service on 122nd Avenue
$10 million for Intelligent Transportation System improvements to three key freight routes
Now Santa, we understand you may feel this seems like a very long list. It sure is! We have not raised the resources to meet the needs of the dynamic, growing city that Portland has become.
And remember - We’ve been really good, making a lot of progress on that this year. Remember the fog seal street program we started? Such an efficient use of maintenance dollars! Remember the financial wiz we lured from Chicago to take over the transportation bureau?
We’ve also got a great cookie recipe for you this year. The organic milk is on its way from the neighborhood store. Give our best to Mrs. Claus.
Charlie and Steve