A standing room only crowd for the Wasco County Planning Commission’s public hearing on a Union Pacific application to add four miles of mainline railroad track on either side of Mosier at the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center had essentially one message: deny the application. No one besides Union Pacific officials spoke in favor of the proposal, which County planning staff has recommended be approved with a laundry list of conditions. Union Pacific’s Clint Schelbitzki said the track expansion would improve efficiency, and claimed it would not bring about increased train traffic. But the criticism came from just about every angle, with Mosier officials coming off of last June’s oil train derailment there questioning its safety and recommending denial of the project, joined by representatives from Hood River and Stevenson. Friends of the Columbia Gorge officials said the application should be rejected not just for safety reasons but also for impacts to the river, salmon, cultural resources, and visual impacts in the National Scenic Area, while also noting an expert study they had done indicated train traffic would increase. Written testimony will be taken through September 13, with the proceedings to be continued on September 26.