Every now and then the energy of an idea manages to find a path to grand expression. Such has been the case with this project.
It started out as a dream hatched around the fire pit, back in the indistinct beginnings of Urban Green. It was part of a slowly coalescing plan for a community alternative transportation network. When the Park Avenue Station project manifested, it provided a boost to the concept. The Trolley Trail, a bike and pedestrian thoroughfare through the heart of the Oak Grove community west of McLoughlin Blvd, would be completed, along with the Station, by the fall of 2015, forming the hub of the alternative transportation possibilities.
Another element of the dream is a network of neighborhood electric vehicle pathways that would allow people to reach most of the community services they need with an inexpensive and versatile vehicle that can go where larger vehicles can’t. Being open to the possibilities for connecting all of these modes and networks is a habit by now.
The best way to predict the future is to invent it. ~ Alan Kay
During the course of Urban Green’s service on the County’s TSP Citizen Advisory Committee, it became clear that the County’s vision lacked any substantive plan for investments in our bicycle and pedestrian transportation network. The Oak Grove – Lake Oswego Crossing project was subsequently voted out of the Committee onto the County’s TSP as a high priority, with near-unanimous Committee support (no negative votes).
Even though County staff placed it as a low priority on the list presented to the County Commissioners, it was elevated by the Commissioners to the top of the priority list when they voted on the plan.
Since then, Urban Green partners have developed a concept for the Crossing itself, and it has become a highly visible project in the region’s transportation plan. It is now a key element of a Tualatin-to-Milwaukie bike and pedestrian trail, with strong support from stakeholders in the several communities that would be served by this project.
We’re pretty sure that this project has a lot of latent possibilities that we’ve only begun to explore.