Southwest Washington Regional Transportation Council

Press Release

July 26, 2001

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Vancouver, Washington -- The first tier of a study of possible future improvements to the Columbia River Crossing between Hood River, Oregon and Bingen/White Salmon Washington has just been completed. The study is being undertaken by the Southwest Washington Regional Transportation Council (RTC), Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), in coordination with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). During the last several months, the management and consulting team working on the project evaluated and narrowed a preliminary list of crossing corridors. Members of the public and local appointed and elected officials, including three project advisory committees, have played a critical role in commenting on the initial corridor screening and identifying options to be studied further.

The following crossing corridors have been recommended for further study:

  • City Center, connecting the 2nd Street interchange in Hood River to SR-14 in Washington.
  • Existing Low, approximately the same alignment as the current bridge.
  • East A, connecting Koberg State Park in Oregon to Bingen Point in Washington.

Three other corridors will not be studied further, including:

  • West, connecting I-84 near the West Hood River interchange in Oregon to SR-14 in Washington.
  • Existing High, approximately the same alignment as the current bridge at a higher elevation; connecting Button Junction to Jewett Boulevard (SR-141).
  • East B, located east of the East A corridor, near Reese’s Mill in Washington.

The following types of facilities will be studied. One or more may be evaluated in each of the corridors identified for further study.

  • Bridges, including:
    • Re-use of the existing bridge with improvements, as a stand-alone facility or a companion to a new facility.
    • New floating bridge.
    • New low-level bridge with a “lift span” similar to the existing bridge.
    • New high-level “jump span” bridge that would meet horizontal and vertical clearance requirements for river traffic without a movable lift span.
  • Tunnels, including:
    • “Cut-and-cover,” a shallow tunnel generally used only over dry land.
    • Immersed tube, built and placed in a trough in the river bottom.
    • Bored, created by boring a hole underneath the river.

A “No-Build” alternative will be carried forward throughout the process of evaluating alternatives.

During the next several months, the project team will identify and study specific alternatives, narrowing them to a shorter list of the most promising options for more detailed analysis. Members of the public are encouraged to participate in the study through advisory committee meetings, a random sample survey, community group presentations, public open houses and other means. The next advisory committee meetings are scheduled for this September.

Additional information also can be obtained at the project web site: or by calling Dale Robins at 360-397-6067.


For general inquiries

Dale Robins
Senior Transportation Planner
Regional Transportation Council

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