The Columbia River Crossing planners ignored river users’ input and opted for 95 feet [of vertical clearance]. The fateful blunder has put the project at odds with a handful of marine shippers, the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, both of which need to sign off on the project.
The impasse may force the CRC to jettison the $3.1 billion current plan — seven years in the making — and design a higher bridge at a cost of $100 million-plus.
How did the CRC get to this place? How did an organization with tens of millions of dollars to spend and years of time, whose mission in part is to facilitate marine cargo flows, mess up something so basic as an acceptable bridge height?