VANCOUVER, Wash. (December 13, 2018) – Today, Governor Jay Inslee released details of his 2019-2021 budget proposal, which includes $17.5 million in funding to establish an I-5 bridge project office tasked with helping define a new project scope, evaluate the previous Record of Decision and re-establish vital partnerships that will lay the groundwork to ensure long-term success.
With a growing population and a rising number of businesses seeking to expand and locate in Southwest Washington, the Columbia River Economic Development Council (CREDC) is mobilizing its network of more than 200 business leaders and strategic partners to support a bridge project that provides a long-term solution to the mobility needs of Clark County, the metropolitan region and the entire West Coast.
To this end, CREDC recently formed the I-5 Bridge Replacement Task Force made up of business and public sector leaders across the County who will contribute the voice of the business community as this critical work moves forward. Aligned with the Clark County Comprehensive Economic Development Plan, CREDC’s vision for the County is to be one of the most inclusive, healthy, and amenity-rich communities in the country. To accomplish this vision, it is critical that our transportation infrastructure accommodate our immediate needs and set us up for success as we continue on a rapidly growing trajectory.
“This move makes it clear that Governor Inslee sees the importance of advancing infrastructure solutions along the Interstate 5 corridor through Clark County.” said Max Ault, interim president of the Columbia River Economic Development Council (CREDC). “This investment is a critical step to continue growing Washington’s economy and strengthen Clark County’s competitive advantage at a national and global scale.”
“We thank Governor Inslee for his leadership on this critical infrastructure project, and stand ready to assist him, his staff and the Washington Legislature.” said Steve Horenstein and Page Phillips Strickler, co-chairs of the CREDC I-5 Bridge Replacement Task Force. “As this project moves forward, we look forward to be a resource as representatives of the business community.”
“Thank you to Governor Inslee for his support and leadership in moving this nationally significant infrastructure project forward,” said Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle. “Replacement of the Interstate 5 bridge will support long-term economic development in the region and address the congestion and safety problems that increasingly impact our community and the region overall. Opening the I-5 bridge project office is a significant step forward in advancing this critical project.”
“Governor Inslee displayed great leadership today. Showing a willingness to re-engage in this project sends a loud and clear message that it is an economic life-line, not only between Oregon and Washington, but also to the region and the country.” said Tim Schauer, president of MacKay & Sposito. “Our future, both from an economic lens and a livability lens, depends on a new multi-modal bridge connecting the states.”
“It is critically important for us to focus on all the current transportation challenges, this includes both the river crossing challenge and the overall flow of traffic on both sides of the river. It is affecting local businesses in many ways.” said Kevin Tapani, vice president and chief financial officer of Tapani Inc. “I believe if all parties work together for the good of the whole, the challenges can be overcome, and we can move forward to strengthen our communities.”
About Columbia River Economic Development Council
Serving Clark County since 1982, CREDC is a private-public partnership of over 150 investors and partners working together to advance the economic vitality of Clark County, Washington. Through collaborative leadership, CREDC promotes job creation and capital investment while maintaining the County’s exceptionally high quality of life. www.credc.org
Monica Santos-Pinacho, Director of Communications, CREDC
(360) 567-3181, firstname.lastname@example.org