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Recently, I posed a series of questions to the "Yes for Tigard" campaign via their Facebook site, only to find my comments erased along with my ability to ask this shadowy group questions. The secretary of state's address finds that the "Yes for Tigard" group has no known Tigard address — its registered committee address is 3321 S.E. 20th Ave., Portland, Oregon 97202, and its registered director is Andy Cotugno, a former Metro planner who has no ties to the city of Tigard.

As a resident of our fine city, this bothers me that an outside organization with no tie to Tigard is working so hard to ignore a Tigard resident and to influence an election — for whom? Out-of-state construction companies and developers?

Our residents deserve an honest answer to this question: How will light rail reduce congestion? Given the following facts:

1. It won't serve Highway 99W, where much of the city's congestion lies. The light rail route will only have one stop — Tigard Transit Center — that's within sight of Highway 99W.

2. It won't serve Washington Square, Cascade Avenue or any other commercial district in Tigard where people travel for shopping or for employment. Nor will it serve Kruse Way, Tualatin, Sherwood or King City.

3. It won't serve any of Tigard's residential districts. Not one.

4. It won't be used by Portlanders traveling through Tigard to the Oregon Coast or to Oregon's Wine Country.

5. It won't be used by Yamhill County or Sherwood residents travelling to Tigard or elsewhere in the Metro area.

6. TriMet has a long track record of cutting bus service in conjunction with, or shortly after, a MAX line is opened; therefore current bus riders will be forced off the bus and into cars.

7. The only area that the proposed Southwest Corridor project will serve in Tigard is our sole industrial area — populated with businesses that generally have little use for light rail, either for their employees, their customers or their business activities.

8. Out of necessity, TriMet's 12-Barbur bus will be eliminated; this will end transit service north of Tigard TC to the city's north-end commercial district. That means our city's low-income and transit-dependent residents won't be able to easily get to Fred Meyer or Walmart.

9. The "branch option" that is being championed by Metro would actually be a major reduction of transit service to Tigard. Today, we have three bus routes — 12, 64 and 94 — providing fairly frequent service to Portland during rush hour; the "branch option" leaves Tigard with just one MAX train every 30 minutes, even during rush hour; further, Tigard transit riders wanting to get to Bridgeport Village from downtown would have to board a train, travel one stop and then transfer to another train.

Erik Halstead is a Tigard resident.

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