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Portland Has Less Money For The Sellwood Bridge

Portland city’s share of the cost to build the new Sellwood Bridge just dropped — from a possible $100 million to a maximum of $86 million.

Artists rendition of the new Sellwood Bridge

Artists rendition of the new Sellwood Bridge

Courtesy Multnomah County

The city had to reduce what it could pay  because of what’s known as compression.

Compression is the process the city uses to reduce property taxes to the limits imposed by Measure 5.

So, because voters passed measures like the library taxing district in November, the city had to reduce its expenditures on other things — like the Sellwood Bridge.

Multnomah County is leading the project. Spokesman Mike Pullen says it’s not a big hit because of historically low interest rates.

“We just last week sold the bonds for the Sellwood Bridge,” he says. “And we were able to get more funds for the bridge construction, that basically covered the portion that the city of Portland was going to give us, while still getting a interest rate of about 2.52 percent.”

Pullen says the bridge is going to close January 17th for about a week as the old deck is moved onto new pilings.

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