EUGENE, Ore. - An overarching Lane County board called the Metropolitan Policy Committee picked West 6th and 7th Avenues for the EmX extension - but with strings attached.
Eugene's City Council and LTD already voted for the West 6th/7th option, and Lane County Commissioner Sid Leiken proposed Thursday to change the process in the months ahead.
He suggested LTD complete the mandatory environmental survey on the project, then bring those results back to the three voting boards for a decision.
Therefore, in six months or more, the city and county can still kill the project after the environmental survey is done.
The MPC has 10 voting members: two from the City of Eugene, two from the City of Springfield, two from Lane County, two from LTD, one from the City of Coburg, and one from ODOT.
County Commissioner Jay Bozievich, who represents western Lane County, said he disagreed with Leiken.
"My inbox has been overwhelmingly against this project," he said.
Bozievich said he represents people who live, do business and travel on West 11th Avenue.
"It doesn't solve the problem people are trying to solve," he said, arguing it would drive up the operating costs for LTD. "LTD is going to have to cannibalize other parts of their system."
LTD said the environmental survey will cost about $1 million.
Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy seconded Leikens motion for LTD to complete an environmental survey on the project and then send the issue back to the full Council, LTD board and MPC.
Members of the MPC aruge they don't want to kill EmX in Eugene but want the environmental analysis to be done before they decide, as well as more info about getting federal funding.
"If we can't make it work, and it doesn't make any sense, then we won't move forward with it," said Greg Evans, LTD board.