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by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: JONATHAN HOUSE - The view from the top of the TriMet transit bridge currently under construction over the Willamette River in Portland.Whoop Whoop didn’t make the cut. Neither did former Mayor Bud Clark, who coined the phrase.

Matt Groening failed to make the grade, as did any of his popular cartoon characters, including Homer and Lisa Simpson.

Even such iconic words as Portlandia, Stumptown, Rose City and Rip City aren’t on the list. They are all among thousands of names submitted by the public, but rejected by the committee charged with proposing the finalists for the new TriMet transit bridge under construction over the Willamette River.

And, yes, Willamette Bridge was rejected, too.

The Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge Naming Committee unveiled four names to be submitted to TriMet for the final selection this week:

• The Abigail Scott Duniway Transit Bridge. Duniway (1834-1915) was known as “the

pioneer woman suffragist of the great Northwest” who dedicated herself to social justice, education and family welfare for more than 40 years. She was a tireless lecturer who led the fight to gain voting rights for women in Oregon, and she wrote and edited her own newspaper, “The New Northwest.” It would be the first Willamette River bridge named after a woman.

• Cascadia Crossing Transit Bridge. Cascadia takes its name from the Cascade Range and its snow-capped mountains, which provide a scenic backdrop along much of the Willamette River Valley. The word describes a cross-border region of the greater Northwest. The Cascadia region is generally considered to stretch from British Columbia to Northern California.

• The Tillicum Crossing Transit Bridge, Bridge of the People. Tillicum is a word in Chinook jargon that means people, tribe and relatives. With the passage of time, it also has come to mean friendly people and friends. Chinookans are indigenous peoples and tribes who have lived near the Columbia and Willamette rivers for 14,000 years.

• Wy’east Transit Bridge. Wy’east is the original name of Mount Hood. According to Native American legend, two sons of the Great Spirit Sahale fell in love with the maiden Loowit. She couldn’t decide who to choose, and the two braves, Wy’east and Klickitat, burned villages and forests as they battled over her. Sahale became enraged and killed all three. Realizing what he had done, Sahale erected three mountains to mark where each fell: Mount St. Helens for Loowit, Mount Adams for Klickitat, and Mount Hood for Wy’east.

The public may comment on the names until March 1. TriMet will announce its choice in the spring.

The committee is chaired by Chet Orloff, a 22-year member of the Oregon Geographic Names Board and director emeritus of the Oregon Historical Society.

“We selected these names because they reflect aspects of this region’s unique history and values and communicate the importance of community connections, both through transit and a shared history, now and for generations to come,” Orloff said.

Other committee members are: Betty Dominguez, East County director of Home Forward; Matthew French, managing partner of Zidell Corp.; Sue Keil, member of the Willamette River Bridge Advisory Committee; David Lewis, cultural historian for The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde; Brenda Martin, Portland State University graduate student in urban and regional planning and regular transit rider; Alice Norris, former Oregon City mayor; Pat Reser, arts and historical advocate and Beaverton business owner; Travis Stovall, consultant and TriMet board member; and Krystyna Wolniakowski, director of the Western Partnership Office for National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

The bridge is part of the $1.49 billion Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Project. The 7.3-mile line will connect Portland State University in downtown Portland with inner Southeast Portland, Milwaukie and northern Clackamas County. It will include 10 new MAX stations and is projected to carry up to an average of 25,500 weekday riders.

The line is scheduled to open Sept. 12, 2015. TriMet projects the bridge itself will carry 22,765 weekday riders by 2030. It will be the first new bridge over the Willamette River in 40 years.

The new bridge will be the first cable-stayed bridge in the region, extending 1,720 feet over the Willamette River. It is a unique multimodal bridge that will carry transit, bicyclists and pedestrians, but no private vehicles. Emergency vehicles will be able to access the bridge if necessary. The west end will connect to a new Southwest Porter Street that runs next to the OHSU/OSU Collaborative Life Sciences Building that is now under construction. The east end leads to Southeast Sherman Street near OMSI and the Portland Opera headquarters.

The Portland-Milwaukie line is more than 50 percent complete. It is a partnership of the Federal Transit Administration, Metro, TriMet, the city of Portland, the city of Milwaukie, the city of Oregon City, Clackamas County, Multnomah County and the Oregon Department of Transportation.

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