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Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Avenue, Room 1000, Portland, OR 97204

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Spokane Street Neighbors Continue to Look After Crystal Springs

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The group installed hundreds of native plants along the stream banks as part of the International Day of Action for Rivers.

Thanks to support from the Environmental Services Native Plant Mini Grant, the Spokane Street Neighbors and local volunteers planted 350 plants and shrubs, and 12 trees along Crystal Springs, a Johnson Creek tributary. The planting included a variety of native wildflowers: bleeding heart, trillium, and foam-flower. Native shrubs planted included sword ferns, salal, spirea, Indian plum, red-flowering currant, salmonberry, mock-orange, red-osier dogwood and Nootka rose. Trees planted were red elderberry, vine maple, red cedar, Douglas fir, and one tall shore pine on the east side of the creek. 

The Johnson Creek Watershed Council Support donated bare-root seedlings for planting that were left over from the Johnson Creek Watershed Wide Event. A neighbor donated some Nootka rose and vine maple from his yard, as well as fresh red-osier dogwood branch cuttings that were planted at the toe of the bank.

In 1996, neighbors and Environmental Services organized a restoration project along Crystal Springs to remove deteriorating concrete walls and install native plants, shrubs and trees. To continue this work, the Spokane Street neighbors partnered with the Boy Scouts, the Environmental Services Watershed Revegetation Team, the Johnson Creek Watershed Council, Sellwood Middle School, Save Our Wild Salmon, and many volunteers to weed the site, pick up litter, replant and install beaver protection fencing. 

The Spokane Street Neighbors planting event was also registered as part of the International Day of Action for Rivers and was recently highlighted in the Sellwood Bee.

Portland Wins Award for Crystal Springs Restoration


Westmoreland Park gets national recognition

Restored stream at Westmoreland Park  City staff with award

We’re happy to share that Portland’s restoration of Crystal Springs Creek won recognition from the American Planning Association (APA) at their National Planning Conference, happening this week in Seattle.

The APA is a professional institute for planners that includes 47 chapters around the country.  This award is for Excellence in Sustainability: Sustainable Parks, Recreation and Open Space. 

One of the highlights of the Crystal Springs effort is the Westmoreland Park project.  This award is a testament to the exciting work that Portland Parks & Recreation, Environmental Services, and many community partners and other agencies are doing to weave nature into our neighborhoods, restore historic salmon habitat right in the city, and update our parks at the same time.  We’re looking forward to continued work as part of the Crystal Springs Partnership to keep the momentum going.

Read more about the other award-winning projects here:

And learn about the APA at

Photos: Westmoreland Park after restoration (left).  Brent Horner from Portland Parks & Recreation and Marie Walkiewicz from Environmental Services accepted the award at the APA conference.


Join Environmental Services for the Southwest Watersheds Open House

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Learn about watershed plans and projects on Wednesday, April 22nd at the Multnomah Arts Center

You’re Invited to the Southwest Watersheds Open House, where you can learn more about watershed projects from City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services staff. The Open House is hosted by Southwest Neighborhoods Incorporated (SWNI) and will be held at the Multnomah Arts Center. Environmental Services has been working regularly with SWNI and the southwest community since 2001 to develop watershed plans and projects to improve water quality, address public interests, enhance fish and wildlife habitat, improve infrastructure, and restore watershed functions.

SW Watersheds Open House

Where: Multnomah Arts Center, Room 29, 7688 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, OR 97219

When: Wednesday, April 22, 2015 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm

Learn more about all of Portland’s watersheds on the web at    


Native Plants Taking Root on Division Street

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Spring is here and native plants installed in green streets last fall have taken root and are growing.

Green street planters capture stormwater runoff that could otherwise cause flooding, sewer overflows and basement sewer backups. These hardy green street plants are healthy and growing stronger and will soak up stormwater and pollution for years to come.

The city maintains green streets, but there are ways you can help. Signing up to be a Green Street Steward is a rewarding way to care for your community and help keep green streets working well in between scheduled maintenance. Go to to find out more and adopt your own Green Street.

The Division Streetscape Project is part of the Tabor to the River program. Tabor to the River is an innovative, cost-saving approach that combines green infrastructure with sewer repairs and improvements to stop basement flooding, manage stormwater naturally onsite, and restore watershed health.


Stories from Our Watersheds: River Restoration NW Film Festival


Portland’s work and other stories on the big screen (with pizza)

construction to restore streamOn April 30 at the Hollywood Theater, the River Restoration NW Film Fest will showcase some of the best recent films about rivers, streams and fish from the northwest all the way to the Congo River.  Tickets are only $8, there’s beer and pizza, and you’ll be inspired about the great work that’s happening. 

Our own Crystal Springs Restoration project will be featured in a short film from local Straw Bale Films.  We’re looking forward to seeing all the other great stories, too, and hope to see you there!

For tickets and more information, visit the Hollywood Theater website:


Photo: construction begins on a restoration project in Crystal Springs Creek in 2013