April 16th, 2012 10:25 am | by NIGEL JAQUISS News | Posted In: PDX Votes

Mayoral Candidates Spar Over Sustainability Center

mayoral candidatesThe three leading mayoral candidates: Jefferson Smith, Charlie Hales and Eileen Brady - IMAGE: Kenton Waltz

Last week, the three leading mayoral candidates came to WW's office for a joint endorsement interview. Although the three—State Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-Portland), former City Commissioner Charlie Hales and businesswoman Eileen Brady—agree on many issues, one that provides some useful contrast is the proposed $62 million Oregon Sustainability Center.

That project, a joint venture between the City of Portland and the Oregon University System, is meant to be a "living building" that generates all its own electricity, collects all the water it uses and processes its waste-water on site. A top priority for current mayor Sam Adams, the Sustainability Center fell afoul of skeptical legislators who rejected the university system's request that the state issue $37 million in bonds to pay for a big chunk of the project.

The candidates spent about nine minutes on the Sustainability Center and their discussion includes a fair amount of conflict and pretty different approaches. 

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