By late July, the Oregon Department of Transportation had received more than 30 applications for a seat on the community advisory committee for the 82nd Avenue of Roses implementation plan. The volunteers on the committee will provide input and recommendations to ODOT staff working on the project, as well as to a steering committee composed of elected officials and city, state and regional representatives. “It’s been really exciting to see the response,” said Terra Lingley, who is the new project manager for the plan. “The day the press release came out I got a bunch of phone calls and some emails inquiring about it, so I think the momentum is really great and the community is really interested in seeing this project be a success. So I’m excited to take over and get it going when we get the go-ahead.”
Lingley will be the new project manager for the plan, once the contract negotiations are completed with CH2M HILL, the engineering firm selected to be the lead consultant for the plan. Lingley replaces ODOT’s Mike Mason as project manager as soon as negotiations end. Mason is stepping down because of his full schedule working as project manager with ODOT’s Outer Powell Transportation Safety Project, as well as other projects.
“There are review processes on everyone’s side, so it takes awhile to get there,” Lingley said. “So we’re still negotiating. The original timeline we had was hopefully starting in August, but we just don’t know what’s going to happen. Unfortunately, it does take a little while to get under contract.” However, Lingley said the contract negotiations could last until fall.
Oregon’s Department of Justice has to review the contract in addition to ODOT’s new consultant. Although Lingley could not yet specify who would be selected for the advisory committee, she indicated several community groups had expressed strong interest in joining. Those include the 82nd Avenue Improvement Coalition, APANO (Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon), Jade District and neighborhood coalitions, as well as individual neighborhoods. “What we’re hoping to look for is a broad representation of business and freight and bicyclists and pedestrians and transit riders, as well as the coalitions and organized groups that already have a stake in 82nd,” Lingley said.
She expects about 20 to 25 people will be selected for the committee, so it will not be so large as to be unwieldy. “There are a lot of competing interests and we want to have balanced views, so we need enough people to provide those kinds of diverse interests and input,” she said.
Some members of the group might represent two or more interests, such as a resident and a business owner or a transit rider and a bicyclist. The new consultant has a public involvement firm as part of their team, who will likely participate in the selection process. The engineering firm also has other sub-consultants on its team, such as a bicycle/pedestrian group.
Lingley worked as a senior transportation planner with ODOT for the past year. Before that, she worked for eight years at CH2M HILL, managing long-range transportation projects and smaller transportation growth management grants, which are disbursed by ODOT. Much of her work was in the central Willamette Valley and on the coast.
Lingley has been collaborating closely with Mason so that core elements of the 82nd Avenue project will not have changed, but they may be modified slightly during the negotiation process with the new consulting firm. Lingley continues to attend meetings of the 82nd Avenue Improvement Coalition in addition to other neighborhood meetings and community events.