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Development Services Makes Emergency Declaration For Slope Stabilization, Allows Limited Entry to Additional Structures at Landslide Site


City of Portland, Bureau of Development Services






October 17, 2008

Contact: Ross Caron, 503.823.4268

(Portland, OR) On Thursday, October 16, 2008, a Customer Assistance Team mobilized by the City of Portland's Bureau of Development Services met with 11 property owners or their representatives impacted by the October 8, 2008 landslide that occurred at SW Burlingame Place and SW Terwilliger Blvd.

Bureau Director, Paul Scarlett, assured the impacted property owners that the Bureau of Development Services will continue to assist in the recovery efforts and solicited feedback from the group on how to best accomplish that. The property owners shared their concerns and indicated that they want the City of Portland to take the lead on temporarily securing the slope while they continue to work with their respective insurance companies and representatives on recovery efforts.

As a result, BDS Director Paul Scarlett made a declaration yesterday, October 16, 2008, that an emergency exists that threatens public health, safety and commerce due to the house at 6438 SW Burlingame Place sliding downslope. This emergency declaration will allow the Bureau of Development Services to expedite temporary protection of the slope and authorizes the City to hire a contractor to install temporary slope protection measures.

The Bureau of Development Services worked late into the evening on Thursday to file this declaration and secure a contractor. Our goal is to get the temporary measures in place as quickly as possible before heavy rains begin to fall. These temporary protection measures are intended to remain in place while the Bureau of Development Services continues to work with property owners and their representatives to make permanent repairs.

In addition, BDS engineers worked with the property owners of 6442 SW Burlingame Place and 6307 SW Terwilliger Blvd. and their engineers to evaluate the condition of these structures yesterday. Both of these properties were impacted when the home at 6438 SW Burlingame Place slid downhill and were red-tagged as unsafe for entry. Based on our evaluation, the Bureau of Development Services will lift the red tags and replace them with limited entry yellow tags temporarily to allow these property owners to remove certain belongings. The red tags will be replaced after the belongings are removed.

We will provide additional information on the slope stabilization work and permanent recovery efforts as it becomes available.

About the Bureau of Development Services (BDS):

The City of Portland's Bureau of Development Services (BDS) promotes safety, livability and economic vitality through efficient and collaborative application of building and development codes. BDS staff reviews and issues approximately over 50,000 building, plumbing, electrical, mechanical and sign permits, along with performing 217,000 permit inspections and 1,300 land use reviews for residential and commercial properties. For more information visit our website at


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