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Vier, Kight battle for Troutdale council

TROUTDALE - Former City Councilor Jim Kight and Planning Commission Member Marianne Vier will square off for position 1 in the Nov. 7 election.

'My greatest joy is really helping other people and helping my community,' Kight said.

One of Kight's main goals is to bring the Multnomah County Library to Troutdale.

He has met with local leaders to discuss the idea of a public-private partnership that would allow the county to lease space for a library from a private owner.

That way the building would still be on the tax rolls, but would cost the county less, Kight said. He envisions having a coffee shop or other compatible business in the building.

Another thing Kight would like to accomplish if he is elected is getting a new interchange built off of Interstate 84.

'South Frontage road is a total traffic disaster,' Kight said.

Similarly, Kight doesn't believe that any of the major East County roads will suffice as a north-south connector.

'All the easy, quick fix transportation projects have already been done,' Kight said. 'Now it is going to be really, really tough.'

Although he believes urban renewal wasn't the only option for developing the city's riverfront area, Kight believes the property holds a lot of potential for the city.

The development of the Alcoa property is also important for the city's future, he said.

Kight would like to see the city take advantage of the property's location and create recreation opportunities along the river, but he understands a need for some industrial development as well.

One area where Vier sees a definite need for improvement is with the level of synergy within the council and between other jurisdictions.

'It's absolutely necessary to be able to communicate at the local level,' Vier said.

However, Vier believes some issues, such as transportation and crime, should be addressed as regional problems.

She said she would also like to see the council take a stronger, more unified stand on issues such as urban renewal, which proved to be quite divisive.

She also said she would like to see the city's Ad Hoc Downtown Redevelopment Committee continue its work.

'The strength of that group was really positive,' Vier said.

In addition, Vier would like to see the city's leaders be more responsive to tragedies and other events that affect the people in the area.

Vier believes her employment history in human resources, which has trained her to communicate with people in a number of technical disciplines, could be extremely useful when it comes to the city's riverfront renewal.

She also believes her experience on the city's planning commission is invaluable.

Vier hopes to see green space integrated with quality, balanced development within the city.

Specifically, she would like to see a mix of uses on the Alcoa property that would generate more local jobs. She believes it is important to get members of the community more involved in designing future development in that area. Vier said she would also like to encourage citizens to get to know the areas around them, and request changes if they are unhappy with the city's development codes.