Apr 6, 2007
No Joke! Tram Proposed In Troutdale
After opening next week's city council agenda notebook, one agenda item popped out at me: MASS TRAM AMERICA. I did a double take. A tram proposal for Troutdale? Surely the date read April 1 and was a late April Fools day joke. But I looked at the date again. Nope. It's a real agenda item, for the April 10 meeting.
Next step: Google it. There it is. With a write-up in the most recent Willamette Week, no less. Step Two: I clicked on the web site for the project, the highwayinthesky.us.
I couldn't help myself. A snorting guffaw came out when my eyes fell on the artist's rendering (seen above). I know, I know. These people are apparently very serious about their proposal. And as an elected official, I should, with all decorum, show plenty of the proper seriousness and respect for any proposal that comes before us. So please accept my apologies for my lack of decorum, Mass Tram America.
In all seriousness, this is what Mass Tram America wants from the city of Troutdale:
"Troutdale and Mass Tram America agree to discuss and review designs for potential Prototype routes and partnership concepts that can help leverage the finance and development of a pollution-free transit system Prototype". etc etc.
Then we get to the money line in the last sentence of their proposal: "I look forward to working with the Mayor, Commissioners and Troutdale planning staff to create and fund an exciting solution to meet a range of urban livability challenges. Best Regards, Julie Mikalson, Progressive Strategies".
In other words, they have their hand out for some public money to finance their tram concept: recycled 737 aircraft fuselages powered by solar cells.
Troutdale's a small town. Couldn't they start smaller, say, by recycling Sky King's twin-engine Cessna 310B?
(I always wanted to meet his niece, Penny. . .)