About the Program

IBR Modified LPA

The IBR Recommendation for a Modified LPA includes a partial interchange at Hayden Island and a full interchange at Marine Drive, Light rail to Evergreen near 1-5, 1 auxiliary land and Variable rate tolling. It was also have a shared use path and improved active transportation.


What is the Modified LPA?

The Modified Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) refers to an agreed upon set of components that will be further evaluated through an environmental review process. It is *not* the final design of the replacement bridge, but it is a key milestone, setting the direction for the program as we start to test and evaluate plans for a new multimodal river crossing system.
Elements of the Modified LPA and program area improvements under review include:

  • A new bridge built west of the existing bridge.
  • Improvements to seven interchanges, north and south of the Columbia River, as well as related enhancements to the local street network.
  • Extension of light rail from the Expo Center in Portland to E. Evergreen Blvd in Vancouver, along with associated transit improvements such as transit stations and park and rides.
  • A variety of improvements for people who walk, bike, and roll throughout the program area.
  • Variable rate tolling for motorists using the river crossing as a demand management and financing tool.

What we learn from the review process, and corresponding environmental studies, will determine how we move forward, and necessary work to avoid, minimize or mitigate negative effects to our environment. This process will include opportunities for review and public comment and will inform the design refinements and decisions.

Modified LPA and Program Area Improvements

Improvements shown are being analyzed as part of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process and may be modified as a result of the environmental evaluation and public input. In some instances, multiple design concepts are being studied (e.g., park and ride locations and roadway alignment) to better understand the range of impacts and better optimize the design to avoid environmental resources.

All images shown are conceptual for the purpose of analysis and do not represent final design.

The map focuses on improvements on the North end around SR 500. This section features new interchange to interchange connections between E 35ths st and E 39th St.

 

Vancouver: SR500 to E. Fourth Plain Blvd

  • Interchange to interchange connections (braided ramps)
  • Replacement of E 29th St and E 33rd St overcrossings
  • Active transportation improvements

 

 

The map focuses on E 13th st to just north of E 4th Plain Blvd. There are Interchange improvements to Mill Plain and Fourth Plain. There is also improvements to E McLoughlin Blvd with a raised roadway. There are active transportation connections with all improvements

 

Vancouver: E. Fourth Plain Blvd to E. Mill Plain Blvd

  • Improvements to Fourth Plain & Mill Plain interchanges
  • Interchange to interchange connections (auxiliary lane and braided ramps)
  • Active transportation improvements

 

This image compares two options in downtown Vancouver with the main difference being a Cst connection. Both have Connections to SR 14 and Downtown Vancouver. Transit is light rail and runs under 1-5 with an Evergreen Terminus. Active transportation runs under the bridge and connect to the waterfront and downtown Vancouver. There is an option for a community connector to run over 1-5 at Evergreen Blvd. There is also a new transit station here, and several options around it being studied for potential park and ride locations. There is also a transit station located at the waterfront.

 

Downtown Vancouver: Option 1

  • Vehicles traveling I-5 northbound access downtown Vancouver via C Street ramp
  • Light rail alongside I-5 with stations at the waterfront and E. Evergreen Blvd
  • Potential location for a park & ride structure
  • I-5 connections to downtown Vancouver and Hwy 14
  • Active transportation improvements with connections to I-5
  • Potential “community connector” (freeway lid) near E. Evergreen Blvd

 

This slide compares two options in downtown Vancouver with the main difference being a Cst connection. Both have Connections to SR 14 and Downtown Vancouver. Transit is light rail and runs under 1-5 with an Evergreen Terminus. Active transportation runs under the bridge and connect to the waterfront and downtown Vancouver. There is an option for a community connector to run over 1-5 at Evergreen Blvd. There is also a new transit station here, and several options around it being studied for potential park and ride locations. There is also a transit station located at the waterfront.

 

Downtown Vancouver: Option 2

  • Vehicles traveling I-5 northbound access downtown Vancouver via Mill Plain Blvd ramp
  • Located approximately 30 feet west of Option 1
  • Light rail alongside I-5 with stations at the waterfront and E. Evergreen Blvd
  • Potential location for a park & ride structure
  • I-5 connections to downtown Vancouver and Hwy 14
  • Active transportation improvements with connections to I-5
  • Potential “community connector” (freeway lid) near E. Evergreen Blvd

 

The map image focuses on Hayden Island and includes the south segment of the existing 1-5 bridge and the new 1-5 bridge, just to the west of it. Jantzen Beach Drive and Hayden Island Drive run east-west under I-5. Tomahawk Island Drive runs east-west in the Regional Retail Center/Transit-oriented Development Neighborhood, and another local street runs north-south through the neighborhood, with intersections at Jantzen Beach Drive, Tomahawk Island Drive, and Hayden Island Drive. Light rail is shown on the SB bridge and active transportation is shown on the NB bridge. There is a new light rail station along that links to the shared use path. 
There is an Arterial bridge East of I-5 that serves as a local connection between Hayden Island and North Portland

 

River Crossing to Hayden Island

  • Replacement bridge located west of existing bridge
  • Addition of one auxiliary lane in each direction and safety shoulders on the bridge
  • Light rail running under southbound bridge structure and a new transit station on Hayden Island, west of the freeway
  • Active transportation path on northbound bridge with connections to Hayden Island
  • Partial I-5 interchange configuration on Hayden Island
  • Arterial bridge east of I-5, providing a local connection between Hayden Island and North Portland



The map image shows a section of North Portland from Delta Park to N. Portland Harbor. The interchange configuration is a full interchange with on and off ramps for NB and SB 1-5. Improvements to I-5 extend Delta Park, MLK, and Marine Drive. There are also local street connections and improvements, shared use path improvements through out the new design, and an expanded Expo Center station.

 

N Portland Improvements: Marine Drive to Interstate Ave

  • Single-point urban interchange (SPUI) at Marine Drive
  • Local street connections and improvements
  • Active transportation improvements including connections to 40-Mile Loop
  • Extension of light rail to Hayden Island
  • Potential transit storage structure

 

Next Steps

The Modified LPA and program area improvements are currently undergoing environmental evaluation as required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to better understand benefits and impacts. By summer 2023, the IBR program will publish a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, disclosing the findings of environmental evaluation. The document will be available to the public for review and comment. Community events such as public hearings and open houses will be scheduled to share findings and answer questions. 

After the public comment period closes, the Modified LPA will be refined in response to public input and other design considerations. Refinements will result in a combined Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement and Amended Record of Decision issued by the Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration. At this stage, the IBR program will be able to apply for permits, update cost estimates, and further design.

Based on the current estimated schedule, the program anticipates beginning the construction phase of the program in 2025.

*Partner agencies were asked to confirm their support for foundational components of the Modified LPA to advance for further study in the environmental evaluation (Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement or SDEIS). During the SDEIS, public comment will be taken for at least 45 days and design refinements will be made the following months to respond to findings from the environmental review and public input. Full acceptance of a corridor-wide alternative will not be identified until after public comment and design refinement. At the conclusion of the review process, a ROD will be made and the program will enter into final design and pre-construction.

Design Options that were Evaluated

Transit Investments

Transit investments have a unique set of data and analysis to inform decision-making and identify how each transit option performs. Analysis and modeling include measures such as ridership, travel time, reliability and costs, among others. The transit options were screened to understand how they perform against the program’s climate and equity goals.  

Light Rail Transit (LRT) currently operates in Portland, with the Yellow Line terminating at Expo Center, near the southern border of the program area.  Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) currently operates in Vancouver as The Vine, with its southern-most stop located at Turtle Place in downtown Vancouver.

Equity considerations: Station locations, mobility improvements and property impacts are all key considerations in the development of transit options.
Climate considerations: All options increase transit choices for interstate travel in the program area.

The IBR program analyzed the following transit options:

Four potential light rail transit options could extend the Yellow Line from the Expo Center in North Portland into Vancouver. All of these options would also feature express bus service between the two cities.

View a map showing options

  • The 2013 LPA – LRT would extend from the Expo Center in Portland to a terminus (end point) near Clark College in Vancouver. This option would include five new transit stations: one near McLoughlin/I-5, three in the Vancouver Central Business District and one on Hayden Island.
  • LRT One Station in Vancouver – LRT would extend from the Expo Center in Portland to Turtle Place in Vancouver. This option would include two new transit stations: one on Hayden Island and one terminus near Turtle Place.
  • LRT Hugging I-5 to Near McLoughlin – LRT would extend from the Expo Center to McLoughlin Boulevard in Vancouver via a dedicated guideway adjacent to I-5. This option would include three new stations: Hayden Island, Evergreen Boulevard and a terminus near McLoughlin/I-5.
  • LRT Hugging I-5 to Kiggins Bowl – LRT would extend from the Expo Center to Kiggins Bowl just north of State Route 500 in a dedicated guideway adjacent to I-5. This option would include five new stations: Hayden Island, Evergreen Boulevard, McLoughlin Boulevard/I-5, 33rd Street and a terminus near Kiggins Bowl.

Three potential bus rapid transit options could extend C-TRAN’s Vine from Vancouver into Portland. All of these options would also feature express bus service between the cities.

View a map showing options.

  • Dedicated BRT Turtle to Expo – Vine BRT lines would extend via a dedicated guideway from Turtle Place in Vancouver to a terminus near the Expo Center in Portland. This option would include three stations: one near Turtle Place, one on Hayden Island, and another near the Expo Center.
  • Dedicated BRT Hugging I-5 – Vine BRT lines would extend via a dedicated guideway from Kiggins Bowl south to the MAX Expo Center Station on a dedicated guideway adjacent to I-5. This option would include six stations: near Kiggins Bowl, 33rd Street, McLoughlin/I-5, Evergreen Boulevard, Hayden Island and the Expo Center.
  • Dedicated BRT through the Central Business District – Vine BRT lines would extend via dedicated guideway from McLoughlin Boulevard through Vancouver’s Central Business District before crossing the river to Hayden Island with a terminus near the Expo Center. This option would include six stations: one near McLoughlin/I-5, three in the Vancouver Central Business District, one on Hayden Island and one at Expo Center.

Additional options:

  • Option L – Light Rail Transit, hugging I-5, would extend from the Expo Center in Portland to a terminus near McLoughlin Blvd in Vancouver, close to I-5. Potential station locations include Hayden Island, Columbia St./Columbia Way near the Vancouver waterfront, and Evergreen Blvd.
    View a map showing option
  • Option M – Light Rail Transit, hugging I-5, would extend from the Expo Center in Portland to a terminus near Evergreen Blvd in Vancouver, close to I-5. Potential station locations include Hayden Island and Columbia St./Columbia Way near the Vancouver waterfront.
    View a map showing option
  • The Dedicated BRT and LRT to Hayden Island is a hybrid option where Vine BRT lines would extend via a dedicated guideway from a station near Turtle Place in Vancouver to a terminus on Hayden Island. The MAX Yellow Line would extend from the current terminus at the Expo Center to a new terminus on Hayden Island.
    View a map showing option.
  • The Bus on Shoulder Option assumes C-TRAN express routes 101 and 105X operate as bus on shoulder in the bridge influence area (both directions). Route 101 operates from downtown Vancouver to downtown Portland, Route 105X operates from the Salmon Creek Park & Ride (with a stop at the 99th Street Transit Center) to downtown Portland.
    View a map showing option.
  • Finally, there is a No-Build Option that assumes no transit improvement from the IBR program but does include other planned transit improvements in the next 25 years. This option is used as a tool for measuring the effects of other options.

Preliminary details regarding park and ride station locations were developed to better understand trade-offs associated with each of the possible transit investments and do not represent design decisions. Decisions about station and park and ride size and locations will be made after further analysis and input from the community.

Hayden Island/Marine Drive

In October, the IBR program shared a list of preliminary design options created in response to changes within the Interstate Bridge corridor since previous planning efforts. Full, partial, and no interchange options for Hayden Island were developed, alongside improvement considerations for Marine Drive. All options assumed:

  • Replacement of the North Portland Harbor bridge connecting North Portland to Hayden Island on I-5
  • A new local vehicle access bridge from North Portland to Hayden Island
  • A new high-capacity transit station on Hayden Island
  • Improved pedestrian and bicycle connections from the Interstate Bridge shared-use paths

Initial screening of design options reveals having no I-5 interchange on Hayden Island is not a viable solution. Traffic would be forced to use the Marine Drive interchange to access Hayden Island, resulting in substantial impacts on freight and passenger traffic. Ramp queuing from Marine Drive onto I-5 creates unsafe safety conditions due to speed differential with I-5 through traffic.

Full and partial interchange options were recommended for further consideration and evaluation. The primary differences between these options? Footprint and access.

Full interchange on Hayden Island:

  • Larger footprint over North Portland Harbor
  • More impacts to personal and commercial properties
  • Hayden Island vehicle/freight access to/from Portland via Hayden Island Drive I-5 ramps
  • Larger scale/complexity of I-5 over Hayden Island provides lower quality experience for active transportation and transit access on east-west streets

Partial interchange on Hayden Island:

  • Smaller footprint over North Portland Harbor
  • Fewer impacts to personal and commercial properties
  • Hayden Island vehicle/freight access to/from Portland via local roads and I-5 ramps that cross under Marine Drive
  • Smaller scale/complexity of I-5 over Hayden Island provides higher quality experience for active transportation and transit access on east-west streets

River Crossing

The design options being considered include variations designed for a two-bridge or one-bridge river crossing. Analysis includes measures such as ease of interchange connection with Interstate 5, geometry of freeway interchange ramps, integration with active transportation and environmental impacts, among others.

All configurations include the replacement of the North Portland Harbor bridge, which is needed for consistent seismic resiliency throughout the program area. 

Seismic retrofitting of the North Portland Harbor Bridge is not cost effective based on the age of the bridge and the known costs of recent seismic retrofits. In addition, a retrofit cannot achieve the same resiliency as new construction.

Equity and Climate considerations: All options provide dedicated transit guideway and dedicated wide shared-use path to create appealing and effective transit and active transportation opportunities. Exposure to noise – of particular importance to pedestrians who are blind or visually impaired and rely heavily on sound to navigate – could differ between the options. Options may also carry different implications in terms of displacement or other impacts to houseless populations living in the area. Current and future river conditions are taken into consideration.

The IBR program is analyzing the following river crossing options:

  • The 2013 LPA Option has two bridges and a curved alignment, with highway lanes on the top level and dedicated transit guideway and a shared-use path on the bottom level.
    • Technical considerations: This option provides a narrowed footprint, with the transit and shared-use path under the highway (in comparison with all modes on one level). The curved alignment connects the new bridge to the existing North Portland Harbor bridge and the existing highway corridor in Vancouver.
  • The One Bridge Option consolidates all elements into one bridge, with southbound highway lanes on top of northbound highway lanes. Transit and the shared-use path would be on the lower level on each side of the bridge.
    • Technical considerations: This one-bridge solution would have a smaller footprint over the river and reduce the number of foundations in the water compared to the other options, thus minimizing impacts to the natural environment and surrounding areas.
  • The Two Bridge Option removes the curve as much as possible while maintaining the two bridge/two-level highway over the transit/shared-use path.
    • Technical considerations: The straight alignment is west of the Interstate 5 (I-5) corridor on Hayden Island. This alignment makes the North Portland Harbor Bridge replacement less complex. A straight alignment is less complex to construct than a curving structure.

Tolls on the Interstate Bridge

The Oregon Department of Transportation will administer tolls on the Interstate Bridge. This is an administrative decision regarding which agency will be responsible for the function of collecting tolls, and for providing customer service, but does not set toll policy. Since the Oregon Toll Program is currently identifying how tolls will be implemented on I-5 and I-205, ensuring the Interstate Bridge toll collection system matches other regional systems will ensure consistent operations, customer experience, and support in learning new systems and rules. Important distinctions about this decision:

  • This is not a decision about when or how tolls will be implemented
  • Both states will be involved in determining future policy and implementation of tolling for IBR, developed separately from the Oregon Toll Program
  • While the IBR program has authorization to toll I-5 from the Oregon legislature, authorization is still needed from the Washington legislature
  • Federal approval is required before tolls can be implemented
  • The Washington and Oregon transportation commissions will jointly set rates, exemptions, and discounts, including possible low-income discounts
  • Any tolls on the new bridge would be coordinated with tolling on I-5 so that users will not receive two separate bills when using both the Interstate Bridge and the rest of I-5

The IBR program is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions within the Interstate Bridge corridor in support of state climate goals. Equitable tolling and pricing strategies, in addition to improving high-capacity transit and active transportation options, are methods to achieve this goal.

Program Components

Videos

The Interstate Bridge is located near the Cascadia Subduction Zone, a 620-mile-long highly susceptible earthquake field. Learn more about how a major seismic event could affect the bridge.

Located between Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA the Interstate Bridge is a vital connection that supports local jobs and families, and is a vital trade route for regional, national and international economies.

I-5 is the most significant freight highway on the West Coast, linking regional, national and international markets. Learn more about why replacing the Interstate Bridge is essential.

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