Wyden, Merkley Announce $3.2 Million in Improvements to Buena Vista Ferry

Washington, D.C. – Working to improve transportation
infrastructure throughout the state, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Jeff
Merkley (D-Ore.) announced today that $3.2 million in American Recovery and
Reinvestment Act funds will be used to revitalize the Buena Vista Ferry.

“The Buena Vista Ferry is a landmark in Marion County,”
Wyden said. “For decades, it has served the mid-Willamette valley and with
these improvements it will continue to be an important transportation tool for
many more years. This funding will provide jobs and improve transportation
across the Willamette River.”

“It’s critical that we not only upgrade our existing
ferry lines but also improve their reliability and expand their reach,” Merkley
said.  “This Recovery Act funding will expand ferry service and create
much needed Oregon jobs.”

The funding will be used to purchase a new ferry boat,
improve the existing ferry landings and upgrade terminal electrical utilities
from diesel-powered generators to overhead transmission lines. These
enhancements will provide more reliable and expanded passenger and vehicle
ferry service over the Willamette River.

The Buena Vista Ferry provides safe and reliable
transportation across the Willamette River and is an integral component of the
Marion County Rural Transportation System Plan. The existing ferry is more than
50 years old and requires many repairs and upgrades. The purchase of a new
ferry is a more cost effective alternative to repairing the ferry. The project
will also make improvements to the ferry’s landings and terminal to ensure the
safe crossing of people, vehicles and farm equipment for many years to come.