Are streetcar opinons based on current information?
As a 'fear-mongering opponent' to the streetcar line, as labeled by Donna Jordan in the June 23 Review, I feel it is important to address some of her concerns.
The 'disharmony' on the city council has been brought about by the people electing two councilmen, (Jeff) Gudman and (Mike) Kehoe, who along with Mary Olson do not want to take this 'in-fighting' to the street. They just want to represent what the majority of the folks expect from their government: A platform for constructive dialog.
If Ms. Jordan had been listening to the testimony by the voters over the past couple of months, the voices were loud on both sides, including the majority of the residents in a standing room only council meeting expressing their opposition to the streetcar. The positive response from people of the 2008 survey to which Ms. Jordan refers were simply asked if they liked the idea of having a streetcar line to Portland.
No mention of the $450 million cost, our share of the annual cost to operate the line, a 300-car parking garage, the disruption of the wildlife habitat and the increased traffic congestion downtown.
Now that the folks are informed of the true impact of the streetcar, which will benefit so few people, the opinion has now shifted against the streetcar. The local advisory group conducting the Foothills redevelopment study, to which Ms. Jordan refers, is comprised of one of the developers for the Foothills project, which is dependent on the streetcar line. The success of this project is questionable since this developer was involved in the South Waterfront project.
Some of our city councilors need to take the emotion out of the decision-making process and start conducting themselves in a objective manner. Relying on weak documentation that is three years old to build one's case is difficult to validate, to say the least.
Ms. Jordan might consider exploring the options and relying on accurate information and statistics rather than tearing down the 'fear mongers' and one of her colleagues on the city council.
Dave Sengenberger is a resident of Lake Oswego.