July Email Update

In this issue

  • Community Advisory Committee hears a project update and learns about workforce and business opportunities
  • ODOT issues Notice of Intent to Award, takes step toward unlocking the project’s economic opportunity
  • Sliding into Summer: Engagement in Virtual Spaces
  • Community Opportunity Advisory Committee will meet online August 13

Rose Quarter underground: Looking at conditions from the bottom up

Community Advisory Committee hears a project update and learns about workforce and business opportunities

The Project Community Advisory Committee (CAC) met online on July 23, 2020. ODOT Office of Urban Mobility Director Brendan Finn expressed gratitude for the committee members’ service to the Project and stated that partnerships with and support from our Black community is core to Project’s success. Brendan said that the Project cannot be successful without acknowledging past harm to the African American community. The committee also heard from Megan Channell, Project Director, who summarized CAC input from the last CAC meeting, including the importance of wealth generation and investing in the Black community, the need for open and public communication throughout the Project, and questions about the scope of the project. Megan previewed an example Community Accountability Matrix that will soon be available on the Project’s website to help the committee and community members hold ODOT accountable by tracking committee requests.

The CAC brings community interests and experience into the Project’s decision-making process. CAC meetings are open to the public and include a public comment period. Click below for information about the CAC’s past and future meetings. View a video of the meeting and download materials at the project website.
The next CAC Meeting will be on Thursday, August 20, 2020 from 5:30 to 8:00pm.

Learn more about upcoming CAC meetings

ODOT issues Notice of Intent to Award, takes step toward unlocking the project’s economic opportunity

On July 13th, ODOT announced the notice of intent to award the Construction Manager/General Contractor (CM/GC) contract to Hamilton Sundt, a Joint Venture, in association with Raimore Construction to help design and build the project.

ODOT is bringing a construction team on board early in the design phase to ensure the design and construction benefits from full collaboration with the community.

With a focus on restorative justice, the project is committed to leveraging deep ties with the historic Albina community to ensure meaningful involvement from the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) contracting community and using input from the community to help shape the project and outcomes for the community including generational wealth.

The CM/GC is expected to join the team this Fall.

Read the Press Release

Sliding into Summer: Engagement in Virtual Spaces

While community engagement for the Project has been ongoing since the 1990s, we know that there is still a lot of work to do. ODOT is committed to ensuring Black community members living, working, or with historical ties to the Albina neighborhood and broader N/NE Portland are engaged, participating in and actively shaping the Project.

This summer and into fall, you will see us online and actively and meaningfully engaging with people, with a focus on the Black community. We will use traditional and creative engagement techniques such as mailers and phone calls and working with community-based organizations and faith-based communities to meet communities where they are. We want to foster a two-way dialogue that demonstrates how these conversations inform decision-making.

Through our outreach, we commit to reflecting the shared power of our community and local, regional, and state government to influence project decisions and outcomes. We want you to hold us accountable for those outcomes. To do so, we are going to bring people with diverse backgrounds and expertise together to gain understanding and input and to ensure the Project addresses past harm and present and future local, regional and state transportation system needs in a way that enables communities to thrive.

We’ll be sharing information on the Project and upcoming events throughout the summer and fall in the mail, on our website, and in social media platforms. Stay tuned and please share these opportunities with your friends, colleagues, and networks – we need your help to make this a project for our community, by our community.

Learn more about Events

Community Opportunity Advisory Committee will meet online August 13

The public is invited to attend the next I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project Community Opportunity Advisory Committee meeting. On Thursday, August 13, the Community Opportunity Advisory Committee will meet online from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. See the Project’s website for more information on the meeting’s agenda and how to engage.

Learn more about upcoming COAC meetings

Rose Quarter underground: Looking at conditions from the bottom up

ODOT contractor crews are out in the Project area to collect critical data to inform Project design. Three types of separate field work are scheduled to take place:

Activity Description Duration
Pavement exploration Pavement coring, testing and surface measurements on local streets May 4 – August 2020
Utility mapping Locate, map and record data on underground utilities in Project area June – December 2020
Soil sampling Soil sample collection in Project area July – November 2020

Learn more about work hours and traffic noise impacts

About the Project

The I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project adds auxiliary lanes and shoulders to reduce congestion and improve safety on the main north-south freeway on the west coast and redesigns the local multimodal street network. The project will smooth traffic flow on I-5 between I-84 and I-405 where three interstates intersect and feature the biggest traffic bottleneck in Oregon. The project will also improve community connections by redesigning overpasses and reconnecting neighborhood streets, enhancing public spaces, and promoting economic development opportunities.

Learn more about the project and sign up for email updates at:

www.i5RoseQuarter.org

Read full news release

May Email Update

Community Advisory Committee meets tomorrow

The Project Community Advisory Committee (CAC) meets on Thursday, May 28, 2020 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The on-line meeting is open to the public. The CAC brings community interests and values into the Project’s decision-making process. Meeting topics include a committee orientation and Project design process overview.

To attend this meeting from your computer or phone, join Zoom or watch the livestream on YouTube. Click below for more details about the CAC and how to submit public comment.

All Project committee meetings are open to the public. If you wish to attend a virtual meeting but cannot attend by phone or computer or you require language accommodations, please contact the Project team at 503-470-3127 at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting.

View CAC meeting info

Read more

April E-Newsletter

In this issue:

  • COVID-19
  • OTC to ODOT: Continue work on I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project
  • Project next steps
  • ODOT seeking Project contractor
  • Executive Steering Committee update
  • Rose Quarter underground: Looking at conditions from the bottom up

COVID-19

In response to Governor Kate Brown’s directive to “Stay Home, Save Lives,” all ODOT-related meetings will be held on a virtual platform and will remain open to the public. ODOT is committed to maintaining accessibility and transparency for all public meetings. Look to the Project website for public involvement opportunities and event information. Visit the agency’s COVID-19 web page for more information.

Community Opportunity Advisory Committee (COAC) to meet on April 21

The I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise & On the Job Training (DBE/OJT) Community Opportunity Advisory Committee (COAC) will meet on April 21, 2020 from 5:30 – 7:30 PM, and will be hosted using Zoom, an online meeting platform. The meeting will be open for the public to listen. To make sure your computer is properly setup before the meeting, you can use the Zoom test site.

If you wish to attend the meeting but cannot attend by phone or computer, please contact the Project team at 503-470-3127 at least 24 hours before the meeting time.

Visit the events page for more details or use the link below to join us on the 21st.

Join Zoom Meeting Read more

Join us for the online Community Advisory Committee (CAC) Meet and Greet on March 25

Thank you for your patience as we worked to reformat and reschedule the first CAC meet and greet due to community health concerns around Coronavirus (COVID-19). Based on feedback from our CAC members, the online event is scheduled for Wednesday, March 25, from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. and will be hosted using Zoom, an online meeting platform. The online meet and greet will allow CAC members to get to know one another and build relationships, while ensuring a safe environment. The event will provide an opportunity for CAC members to meet each other and reflect on the project area history. No project presentations or decisions will occur at this meeting. The meeting will be open for the public to listen as we continue to uphold an unwavering commitment to transparency, accessibility and accountability. Details of the first formal CAC meeting following this online meet and greet are forthcoming. To make sure your computer is properly setup before the meeting, you can use the Zoom test site.

Visit the events page for more details or use the link below to join us on the 25th.

I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project advances based on OTC direction

Over the last two months, we have taken several steps to implement the Oregon Transportation Commission’s (OTC) direction on the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project. To date we’ve:

  • Established a project Executive Steering Committee and sent invitations to members. OTC Vice Chair Alando Simpson will chair the Executive Steering Committee and Dr. Steven Holt, owner of Try Excellence LLC, will serve as the lead consultant for and facilitate this committee.
  • Established a Community Advisory Committee (CAC). (See more on the committee below.)
  • Started the selection process for a third-party firm to evaluate highway cover design options.

The OTC also approved submitting a Cost to Complete Report to the Legislature.

Read more

Apply to help shape the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project

Applications now available for Community Advisory Committee

Community members gather around a table to share their feedback at the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project Open House.

We are currently recruiting interested community members to serve on an advisory committee. The committee will help shape the project design and recommend avenues for equitable engagement with the community. The application period runs through February 18, 2020. Apply today!

The Community Advisory Committee (CAC) will include up to 20 members who represent diverse perspectives. Meetings will occur up to nine times per year for up to three hours at a location within or near the project area. Interested community members can learn more and apply at http://i5rosequarter.org/.

The project team has heard from the community about the importance of continued public engagement. The CAC is one example of how the project will intentionally seek community input, further extend opportunities for the public to engage, and bring community interests and values into the decision-making process. As the project moves forward, ODOT will demonstrate and communicate how the CAC’s input meaningfully informs project decisions.

In addition to seeking diversity in the CAC respective to geography, demographics, and current interests, ODOT strives for committee composition reflecting the historic Black and African American Albina Community.

Apply now! 

About the Project

The I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project adds auxiliary lanes and shoulders to reduce congestion and improve safety on the main north-south freeway on the west coast and redesigns the local multimodal street network. The project will smooth traffic flow on I-5 between I-84 and I-405 where three interstates intersect and feature the biggest traffic bottleneck in Oregon. The project will also improve community connections by redesigning overpasses and reconnecting neighborhood streets, enhancing public spaces, and promoting economic development opportunities. The project’s transportation improvements allow the City to implement the development goals for the N/NE area and realize the City’s Central City 2035 Plan.

Read the full newsletter. 

I-5 Rose Quarter Project staff out and about this summer

Come talk with us at local events this summer

We are actively working with our federal partners to review and respond to the public comments received during the Environmental Assessment public review period that ended earlier this year. While the federal review process is underway, we are seeking additional community input to help define a vision for the covers over Interstate 5.

An image of the project table at an outdoor event. The table has project flyers, display boards, sign up forms and candy. The project sign reads "Come talk with us!".

Community members share their input on the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project covers at Good in the Hood in June 2019

We have been out and about in the community to share project information and learn about your values and priorities. In June, staff attended the Juneteenth Celebration and the Good in the Hood Multicultural Festival. At these summer events, community members learned about project elements, asked questions and shared input.

Please join us at these additional events this summer to learn more about the project and share your thoughts:

We are also planning other summer outreach activities including community discussions, an online questionnaire, additional in-person engagement opportunities and recruitment for a Community Advisory Committee (CAC). The CAC will be formed through an open application process later this year. The CAC will advise ODOT and the City of Portland on design aspects, meaningful engagement and equitable project outcomes.

Read the full newsletter.

Soil sampling on I-5 scheduled to start in July

Crews are expected to collect soil samples in the Rose Quarter area starting mid July and continuing until October. The work will ensure the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project can provide information that will help answer questions raised by community members during the Environmental Assessment review about soil stabilities and the highway covers, informs legislative requirements outlined in House Bill 2017, and helps inform future urban design opportunities.

Thank you! Your comments led to a thorough process

Thank you to all who took time to comment on the Environmental Assessment for the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project or who attended meetings and community briefings. We appreciate the thoughtfulness of the comments and knowledge shared to help ensure a thorough environmental process.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) are reviewing all written comments and public testimony received during the official 45-day comment period that ended April 1, 2019. While we work on responses to your comments, we want you to have access to the information shared with us. All the comments received are now posted on the project website. Responses to these comments are forthcoming in the coming months.

Topics frequently mentioned in the comments include:

  • Design and function of the covers over I-5
  • Public process, including the selection of the project for funding and alternatives considered
  • Public health, including air quality and noise effects
  • Climate change
  • Traffic volumes and safety
  • Transit operations
  • Grades and location of bicycle and pedestrian facilities
  • Effects to minority and historically marginalized communities
  • Construction effects
  • Consistency with local land use plans
  • Level of environmental documentation

Please stay engaged

We encourage your continued engagement in this project. More opportunities to provide your feedback and input are coming in the future with a community advisory committee, open houses and design charrettes.

Read the full news release.