Pamplin Media Group – Major critical infrastructure projects will be funded by the federal government

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Over $10 million approved by U.S. House and Senate for community projects around Oregon

More than $10 million in federal funding will likely go to a number of major infrastructure projects in Oregon, including critical infrastructure funding for the Port of Portland and other disaster mitigation projects in the state.

Funding for community projects was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on March 9 and the U.S. Senate on March 10 as part of the 2022 Government Funding Omnibus Appropriations Agreement, which was signed by President Joe Biden on March 15. Oregon leaders have advocated for projects that increase access to behavioral health care, support small businesses, strengthen workforce training, and more.

Each member of Congress may submit up to 10 community project funding applications for consideration. Rep. Earl Blumenauer joined Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici in advocating for $2.67 million in funding for the Multnomah County Behavioral Health Resource Center, among other projects.

Blumenauer also helped secure funding for projects in Oregon, including $2 million for the Willamette Coast Line Rail and Trestle Repair Project; $2 million for the development of phase II of the Gradin community sports park in Gresham; $850,000 for the Cascade AIDS Project for Behavioral Health Services; and more, including Portland Violence Prevention Outreach, Friends of the Children Mentoring Services, PCC Curriculum Development, Native American Center of Excellence Health Workforce Initiative Northwest OHSU and environmental dredging of the Willamette River.FILE PMG PHOTO - US Representative Earl Blumenauer

Additional projects supported by Bonamici in this bill include $2.1 million for the expansion of the Virginia Garcia Newberg Clinic; $1.75 million for Japan Institute Building Renovation Projects at Portland Japanese Garden; $1 million to WorkSystems, Inc. to develop construction trades; $1 million to the town of Hillsboro for the construction of a water supply system; $760,000 to the Columbia River Inter Tribal Fish Commission. In addition, these include a Beaverton nonprofit incubator project, a Banks fire department project, a Columbia County small business resource center, and a Astoria Pre-Disaster Landslide Stormwater Drainage Project.

“This legislation is a major victory for our communities, and I am thrilled that it includes funding for 10 projects in Northwest Oregon that I have championed to increase access to essential services and promote the fairness,” Bonamici said. “These projects will strengthen our communities and create new opportunities for families and workers.” PMG FILE PHOTO - Rep.  American Suzanne Bonamici

Approximately $3.75 million is planned for the Portland Harbor Resilient Runway Engineering Design Project.

According to a National Institute of Building Sciences cost-benefit analysis launched in 2019, a resilient runway at the airport will help Oregon avoid up to $7.2 billion in losses. The institute has been studying disaster mitigation since 2005, finding that every dollar spent on early mitigation saves $4. Additional research from the institute found that every dollar invested in mitigation efforts saves up to $13 in the event of a natural disaster, on average nationwide.

“Designing and building disaster-resistant infrastructure before an emergency occurs is the most cost-effective investment we can make,” Blumenauer said. “As someone who spends way too much time at the Portland Airport, I am excited about this project and proud that the Port of Portland is proactively planning for the future of our region.”

With the $3.75 million, the port plans to complete the engineering and construction plans for the seismic mitigation and lay the groundwork to secure full construction financing. These preliminary efforts aim to provide the technical information needed for the earthquake-resistant track, such as advanced geotechnical analysis for seismic stabilization, according to Blumenauer’s office.

Portland Port executive director Curtis Robinhold said the port appreciates the support of Blumenauer and the Senses. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden.

“The Port of Portland is deeply committed to meeting state and community needs during a crisis. Following an earthquake of significant magnitude, the ground beneath the current PDX runways is susceptible to settling and propagate, crack and fracture the runway pavement surface and render it unusable for aircraft,” Robinhold said. essential lifeline for many Oregonians. This federal funding, combined with an additional $4 million in state funding, will allow us to arrive at the near-final design of a seismic runway at PDX..”

Other projects

The Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission is set to receive $760,000 for the Coastal Marine Observation and Prediction program. Aja K. DeCoteau, executive director of the commission, said the organization is taking over management of the program in 2020.

“(The program is) a perfect complement to our efforts to combine cutting-edge scientific research with traditional ecological knowledge in estuarine and oceanic environments. Our co-management philosophy dictates that wherever the salmon go, we go with them,” said said DeCoteau. “We appreciate the hard work and dedication of Sens. Merkley and Wyden and Representative Bonamici to expand the important work of the CMOP and deepen the understanding of the connection between the Columbia River and the Pacific Ocean, both in terms of impact about the region’s salmon runs and how that helps us quantify the effects of climate change on this important and delicate ecosystem.”

In Gresham, Gradin Sports Park will add several sports fields as well as toilets, concessions and a storage building, according to Gresham town officials, which should have an economic impact as a tournament attraction.

In Newberg, the Virginia Garcia Clinic could double its capacity to provide care with the $2 million for expanding operations, Pamplin Media Group previously reported.

In Hillsboro and other West Side suburbs, the Willamette Water Supply Program is highly anticipated. A water treatment plant capable of handling 120 million gallons of water per day is planned for Sherwood, pumping water from the Wilsonville River to reach residents of Hillsboro, Beaverton and Tualatin.


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