Dylan Rivera reports in today's Oregonian that a TriMet advisory committee, the Portland Design Commission and other decision makers have chosen a hybrid of the cable-stay and suspension bridge prototypes, pictured in a rendering at left, for the new Willamette River crossing between the Ross Island and Marquam bridges that will serve MAX, the Portland Streetcar and pedestrians.
"Yet TriMet, weathering cost overruns on a Washington County rail project [the WES], remains nervous about anything that deviates from bridges of more common design -- and lower cost."
"Many on the Katz committee were enthusiastic about a co-called wave frame girder...Rising only 120 feet above the water, it would present a modest profile...But the wave would require high-performance steel produced by only one company in the United States. So TriMet urged rejection of that choice."
"TriMet staff nudged the committee to favor a cable-stayed bridge...But many on the Katz committee blanched at the cable-stayed design's tall, thick concrete towers as out of proportion...'I still think the wave would be better, but I'm still pleased with this design,' Rosales said."