October 23, 2014
Commissioner Steve Novick
City of Portland, Oregon
1221 SW 4th Ave. Suite 210
Portland, Oregon 97204
Re: Committee Recommendations
Dear Commissioner Novick,
The Vista Bridge Restoration Advisory Committee (VBRAC) is pleased to submit this report in response to your May 4, 2014 letter.
We firmly agree that a suicide deterrent is essential to keep people safe. As evidenced by the interim screen currently in place, there have been no suicides off the bridge since the installation in 2013.
We have examined the many deterrent systems in place, and proposed throughout the country. We have read testimony to their effectiveness. With the assistance and guidance of your staff, we now understand the condition of the Vista Bridge, and are making our recommendations in light of their valuable input.
We believe that there are two viable solutions to this issue:
(1) An aesthetically appropriate historical iron railing mounted to a reconstructed and strengthened historic rail.
(2) A suspended net mounted below at appropriate height to prevent death on impact.
This report puts forth design criteria that should be applied to these two solutions as they are developed by qualified professionals. We recommend that you adopt these criteria to help guide the project to completion.We have also included our many findings, sketches, and calculations that will assist these professionals in their work.
We offer our continued assistance to this important project as it is developed in the further stages of funding, design, community input and ultimately, implementation.
Thank you for this opportunity to be of assistance.
Vista Bridge Restoration Advisory Committee
Mayor Bud Clark (Ret)
Kathleen Gardipee, Office of Commission Steve Novick
David O’Longaigh, Supervising Engineer Bridges and Structures Portland Office of Transportation