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Port of HR holds first reading of partnership rules

This rendering of what a new interstate toll bridge between White Salmon and Hood River could look like includes a 12-foot, multi-use pathway for pedestrians and bicyclists with scenic overlooks. A Denver, Colo.-based company pitched the idea to White Salmon officials last week.

United Bridge Partners rendering
This rendering of what a new interstate toll bridge between White Salmon and Hood River could look like includes a 12-foot, multi-use pathway for pedestrians and bicyclists with scenic overlooks. A Denver, Colo.-based company pitched the idea to White Salmon officials last week.



At a Feb. 6 meeting of the Hood River Port Commission, Kevin Greenwood, project director for the replacement of the Hood River-White Salmon Interstate Bridge, invited Steve Siegel, of Siegel Consulting LLC, to guide the first Port Commission review of the draft administrative rules that would govern the public-private partnerships related to the replacement.

This was the first draft of the rules that the Port of Hood River must establish, according to the Oregon State Legislature, which opened the possibility for public-private partnerships on infrastructure in 2016.

The focus of this discussion was on the acceptance of solicited or unsolicited proposals from entities like the United Bridge Partners, a company out of Colorado, that submitted an unsolicited proposal to the Port of Hood River last November.

The Port did not accept nor even read the United Bridge Partners proposal due to it being in the process of drafting these administrative rules and feeling unable to properly respond to the unsolicited bid proposal.

Siegel noted, “Industry representatives have advised that better proposals are to be expected when more is known about the project. To which there are advantages and disadvantages of accepting unsolicited and solicited proposals.”

After discussions on the latter statement and a comment from legal counsel, Hood River Port Commissioners determined that they will not accept any unsolicited proposals going forward.

They concluded with the statement, “That the option is not beneficial to the port and should be removed from this draft of the administrative rules.”

The meeting went on with discussions about Greenwood’s continued work with project outreach, reviewing financing options, and other related issues.

— White Salmon Enterprise



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