Clark County wants a new bridge, but not one with tolls

Nov 11, 2022, 2:55 PM | Updated: 3:08 pm

Columbia River Bridge...

The Clark County Council doesn't want to include tolls on a renovated Columbia River Bridge. (Thaddeus Roan, Flickr Creative Commons)

(Thaddeus Roan, Flickr Creative Commons)

The plan is to replace the I-5 bridge that crosses the state line from Vancouver into Portland, but the Clark County Council says “no way” to using tolls to pay for it. The county argues the toll places an unreasonable burden on Washington residents.

Currently, 78,000 residents commute from Washington to Oregon for work and already pay taxes there.

The Columbia River replacement bridge could cost as much as $4.8 billion – $1 billion of which is to be financed by each state.

More from Micki Gamez: Which Washington city is the most stressful to drive in?

Planners had anticipated the remaining balance would come from federal grants and tolling, but they are still determining where the rest of the funding will come from now after Clark County unanimously voted no to tolls.

“The Clark County residents who cross the bridge for work pay taxes to the state of Oregon. When we think about the additional funds from tolls that would be collected in multiple places in order to accommodate their commute — it is good reason for this council to take a negative position on that tolling,” said Council Chair Karen Dill Bowerman in a statement to Clark County Today.

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Clark County wants a new bridge, but not one with tolls