Help make history – public can submit ideas to help name the new Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge

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First time in region’s history public to participate in bridge naming

Between October 17 and December 1, the public can submit suggestions for naming the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge. This will mark the first time in the region’s history that the public will have the opportunity to suggest names for the first new bridge over the Willamette River in the Portland metro area. When it opens on Sept. 12, 2015, it will improve transit service in this corridor, and the unique bridge will only carry transit, bicyclists and pedestrians, but no private vehicles.

The Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge Committee is leading the naming effort, which began its work in early September. The committee includes a group of diverse leaders who reflect a shared sense of space, and it’s chaired by Chet Orloff, Director Emeritus of the Oregon Historical Society and a 22-year member of the Oregon Geographic Names Board. He has also founded and edited the journal Western Legal History, and served as Senior Editor of the Oregon Historical Quarterly.

This is the first of two phases of public input, with a bridge name selected in Spring 2014. Members of the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge Naming Committee include:

  • Chet Orloff, Chair

Member, Oregon Geographic Names Board

  • Betty Dominguez

Director of Policy and Equity, Home Forward

  • Matthew French

Managing Partner, Zidell Corporation

  • Sue Keil

Member, Willamette River Bridge Advisory Committee

  • David Lewis

Tribal Historian, The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde

  • Brenda Martin

PSU Graduate Student in Urban and Regional Planning, and regular transit rider

  • Alice Norris

Former Mayor of Oregon City

  • Pat Reser

Arts, Education and Historical Advocate, Beaverton business owner

  • Travis Stovall

TriMet Board Member

  • Krystyna Wolniakowski

Director of Western Partnership Office, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

About the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge
The bridge, the first one built over the Willamette River in Portland in more than 40 years, will be the first cable-stayed bridge for the region, extending 1,720 feet (.326 miles) over the river. The bridge alignment is SW Porter Street on the west side and SE Sherman Street on the east side. This unique bridge will carry transit, bicyclists and pedestrians but no private vehicles. Emergency vehicles will be able to access the bridge if necessary.

About the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project
The 7.3-mile project is the region’s sixth MAX construction project to be built and extends from the terminus of the MAX Green and Yellow lines at Portland State University in Downtown Portland to South Waterfront, SE Portland, Milwaukie and North Clackamas County. About the project:

  • 7.3 miles
  • 10 stations
  • The first of its kind multi-modal bridge over the Willamette River that will carry light rail, buses, bikes, pedestrians and a future Portland Streetcar extension, but no private vehicles.
  • Opens Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015
  • Expands the MAX system to 60 miles and 97 stations

Project partners
The Federal Transit Administration, State of Oregon, Clackamas County, Metro, City of Milwaukie, Multnomah County, City of Oregon City, Oregon Department of Transportation, City of Portland, Portland Development Commission and TriMet.