It's time to check on the current weather conditions in Hell, as Oregon's Department of Transportation (ODOT) is preparing to do some actual road work; the plan being to add an additional southbound lane on I-5 from highway 217 to I-205. Since this is an Interstate, they've got federal funding kicking in to help ease traffic congestion in that area. It's only about a four-mile stretch, but it's a notorious four-mile stretch. And what's the cost for adding a new traffic lane (which will require replacing the Tualatin overpass and reconfiguring access/exit ramps along the way)? $13 million. Light rail proponents are forever yapping about how expensive it is to build roads - and it is - but a four-mile stretch of light rail would run roughly $1 billion under the same conditions.
Even more surprisingly, ODOT is starting up a plan to fix congestion at the Rose Quarter, where I-5 suddenly drops from three lanes in each direction to two. Politicians and their pals who frittered away a couple of hundred million on their "Columbia River Crossing" bridge over the river insisted for years that it was needed to cut congestion, but the rest of us knew that the problem was at the Rose Quarter rather than the river.