French Prairie Bridge ProjectCity Hosts French Prairie Bridge Project Open House, Names Citizen Task Force

WILSONVILLE, OR — The City of Wilsonville is hosting a public open-house for the French Prairie Bridge Project on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 5–7 p.m., at City Hall, 29799 SW Town Center Loop East, Wilsonville. The public event features members of the project management team providing an overview of the proposed bicycle/pedestrian/emergency-access crossing of the Willamette River west of the I-5 Boone Bridge.

Materials from the open house are available online at, where the public can sign-up to be on a mailing list, submit a comment or question, or view other information. For two weeks after the live open house, the City will continue to accept comments and feedback online at

The City has also named members of the public to serve on an advisory task force for the French Prairie Bridge Project. The first task force meeting is open to the public and scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 31, 6–9 p.m., at Wilsonville City Hall

The French Prairie Bridge Project Task Force reviews key information and provides recommendations to the City Council, at key milestones in the planning and design process. The group’s membership provides representation of a wide range of stakeholder values and interests and includes residents of Wilsonville and surrounding areas. Task force members represent affected neighborhoods and businesses, walking and cycling enthusiasts, local parks and trails interests, tourism associations and emergency service personnel.

The 21-member task force is composed of:

  • Co-Chair Jim Bernard, Clackamas County Board of Commissioners Chair as ex-officio/non-voting member
  • Co-Chair Charlotte Lehan, Wilsonville City Councilor as ex-officio/non-voting member (Councilor Susie Stevens to act as alternate co-chair)
  • Jeremy Appt, Wilsonville resident who is a civil engineer
  • Blake Arnold, Bicycle commuter and Lake Oswego resident
  • Heidi Bell, City Manager for the City of Donald, located just south of Wilsonville in Marion County
  • Steve Chinn, Clackamas County resident who lives on the south side of Willamette River
  • Andrew Harvey, retired Wilsonville resident who is an environmental geologist
  • Tony Holt, Charbonneau Country Club President and former member of the City Budget Committee, Wilsonville resident
  • Karen Houston, Program Coordinator for FACT Oregon, a disability-rights organization
  • Pete Ihrig, West Linn resident and Clackamas County Pedestrian/Bikeway Advisory Committee member
  • Douglas Muench, Wilsonville resident and Old Town Neighborhood Association President
  • Samara Phelps, Tourism Development Lead with Clackamas County Tourism and Cultural Affairs
  • Patricia Rehberg, Wilsonville resident and Wilsonville Wheelers bike-group leader
  • Michelle Ripple, Wilsonville resident and former City Councilor who chaired the prior parks and transit master plan
  • Leann Scotch, Wilsonville resident who works as REI Operation Sales Lead
  • Brian Sherrard, Division Chief with Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue (TVFR)
  • Ryan Sparks, Operations Support Manager Willamette River Trail and Scenic Bike Routes, Oregon Parks & Recreation Dept.
  • Simon Springall, Wilsonville resident and City Planning Commissioner
  • David Stead, Langdon Farms Golf Club General Manager and Wilsonville Tourism Promotion Committee member
  • Steven van Wechel, Wilsonville Old Town Neighborhood resident
  • Gary Wappes, retired Wilsonville resident active with the Kiwanis Club

The goal of the French Prairie Bridge Project, funded by a $1.25 million grant awarded through METRO regional government’s metropolitan transportation improvement program, is to develop preliminary designs for the proposed bicycle/pedestrian/emergency access crossing of the Willamette River. The project, undertaken in partnership with Clackamas County, the Oregon Department of Transportation, seeks to engage the public in addressing key questions about the bridge location, alignment, and design and thereby help position the community and the region to decide whether to pursue funding to create a final bridge design and construct the proposed bridge.

The project began in Fall 2016 and is planned to be complete by Fall 2018 when the Wilsonville City Council is expected to consider the proposed bridge design project. The project includes public open houses and other opportunities for public input regarding the preferred bridge type and landing points throughout the various stages of the process.

For more information, see, or contact Zachary Weigel, PE, Project Manager, at 503 570-1565,

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