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Portland Water Bureau

From forest to faucet, we deliver the best drinking water in the world.


1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 600, Portland, OR 97204

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Water Bureau Adopts New Surplus Property Policy with Increased Public Notification, Involvement Opportunities

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On Wednesday, February 18, Commissioner Nick Fish briefed City Council on a new surplus property policy developed by the Portland Water Bureau and the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES).  The new policy guides the bureaus’ disposal of surplus properties and includes an increased level of public notification and opportunities for community involvement.

Here is a snapshot of the new way the Water Bureau does business around surplus property:

  • Inter-Bureau Transfer or Sale: The properties are first declared surplus by the Water Bureau and then offered for sale to City bureaus and local, regional, and state government.
  • External Notification, Website Announcement, Signage, Printed Notification: If there is no interest, the community notification process begins. This includes external notification to Metro and surrounding county agencies, the State of Oregon, and affected neighborhood coalition and associations. The available property is detailed on the Water Bureau’s Surplus Property website. Signage is placed on the property, identifying it as surplus and a printed public notice is placed in at least one community newspaper.
  • City Council Declares Property Surplus: If no public agency expresses interest in acquiring the property, the Water Bureau prepares a non-emergency Ordinance to be placed on the regular City Council agenda. The Ordinance asks council to declare the property surplus and authorize the Water Bureau to proceed with a public sale.
  • Notice to Sale: Once the City Council designates the property as surplus, the bureau is authorized to place the property on the market for sale.

Click here to access a complete list of surplus property disposal stages.

Website Announcements
As part of the new policy, the Water Bureau developed a robust Surplus Property website. The properties are listed by geographic area (N, NE, NW, SE, and SW). Each property has a dedicated page that includes photos, site details, reason for intent to dispose, square footage, zoning, conditions of sale, and information on the surplus property’s stage of disposal.

Automatic Notification
The public can receive notification by e-mail when the Water Bureau posts new surplus property notifications on the website. Enroll here.

Other City Surplus Property Websites

For questions regarding the surplus property process and policy, visit the website at or contact Tom Klutz, Water Bureau Property and Public Resource Manager, at 503-823-7503 or by e-mail.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Water Bureau Innovation Fund Proposal to Improve Communication with Portland’s Residents

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The Portland Water Bureau has successfully submitted a proposal to the City of Portland’s Innovation Fund.

The City of Portland Innovation Fund is designed to provide seed money for one-time investments that will encourage new, creative ideas to reduce ongoing expenses, increase revenues, create efficiencies, and provide improved services to the City’s internal and external customers.

The Innovation Fund Review panel recently selected 12 project proposals to recommend to Council for funding in Fiscal Year 2014-15. 

The Water Bureau’s Water Quality Map Widget proposal, submitted by Water Bureau Water Quality Information Program Manager Scott Bradway, is one of the 12 project proposals selected. 

The Innovation Fund will allow the Water Bureau and the Bureau of Technology Services to develop an online and mobile-enhanced, map-based tool, called Portland Works.

Screen shot of a similar tool used by Severn Trent Water in the UK.This map-based tool will provide Portland residents a comprehensive view of City projects happening near their homes, places of business, or schools. This will also allow the Water Bureau, and other interested bureaus, to communicate to residents in real time about either planned or emergency projects or issues. Examples of situations that could be included in the tool are water system issues, sewer work, road construction, development, or park projects.

The tool will allow the Water Bureau, and other participating bureaus, to be more effective and responsive to Portland residents.

At the January 14 City Council meeting, the Office of Management and Finance sought and received approval for funding of the proposed Innovation Fund projects.

TRAFFIC ADVISORY 02/16/15: Highway 30 at NW Kittridge Avenue Reduced to One Lane in Each Direction

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Approximately 200 feet of Highway 30 (NW St. Helens Road) at NW Kittridge Avenue is reduced to one lane in each direction until further notice. The center turn lane at that location is closed.

This section of Highway 30 was reported as buckling this weekend due to water damage. The Portland Water Bureau and Oregon Department of Transportation are coordinating repairs.

Motorists are encouraged to use caution as work in the area will likely continue through the week.

Terry Black
Public Information

Washington Park Reservoir Project Initial Land Use Review Application Complete; Public Comment Period Open & Hearing Scheduled

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Request for ResponseIn order to comply with federal and state mandates, and ensure a healthy, resilient, and secure water system, the Portland Water Bureau is moving forward with a project to update the Washington Park reservoir site.

In December 2014, the Water Bureau submitted the first of two Land Use Review (LUR) applications (Type IV) to the City of Portland Bureau of Development Services (BDS) for the proposed Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project.

The initial Type IV LUR application proposes the removal of the Weir Building (screen house), portions of lower Reservoir 4’s basin, and upper Reservoir 3’s basin in Washington Park. The gatehouses, dams, and other historic features will be protected and restored.

On February 9, 2015, BDS deemed the initial Type IV LUR application complete and issued a “Request for Response.” The Request for Response officially opens the public comment period and includes dates of upcoming public hearings.

Public Comment Period Open

The public is now invited to review and submit comments on the Water Bureau’s initial Type IV LUR application.

A copy of the land use application submitted to BDS will be posted on the Water Bureau’s project webpage at Note that BDS maintains the official application record, which tracks updates and revisions over time.

Comments received by Monday, March 9, will be part of the official record and included in the staff report presented during the upcoming Historic Landmarks Commission public hearing. Comments can be e‑mailed to, faxed to 503-823-5630, or mailed to the below address. Please reference Land Use Review number LU 14-249689 in any communications.

Hillary Adam 
Land Use Services, Bureau of Development Services
RE: LU 14-249689
1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Suite 4500
Portland, OR 97201

Public comments after March 9 can be mailed to the Historic Landmarks Commission at 1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Suite 4500, Portland, OR 97201 or faxed to 503-823-5630.

Testify at Public Hearings

A Historic Landmarks Commission public hearing will be held on Monday, March 23 at 1:30 p.m. on the second floor of 1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Conference Room 2500A.

During the hearing, the Commission will listen to public testimony and review the initial Type IV LUR application and staff report that includes mailed, faxed, or e-mailed public comments. After the hearing, the Commission will forward a letter with recommendations to the Portland City Council.

The City Council is scheduled to hold a public hearing on Thursday, April 23 to make the final decision on the initial LUR application.
The Water Bureau will post signage along the perimeter of Washington Park that includes the official notification of the two scheduled public hearings.

Next Steps

In spring 2015, the Water Bureau will submit a second LUR application package that includes two Type III applications. The LUR package will propose the construction of a new covered reservoir, reflecting pools, lowland habitat area/bioswale, walkways, and historic preservation and rehabilitation actions.

The second LUR application process will also include comments periods and public hearings to ensure public notification and the opportunity to comment before a final land use decision is rendered.

Before work permits are issued or construction begins, all LUR applications must be approved. This includes the initial Type IV LUR application and the Type III LUR application package.

The LUR applications are a result of a robust public involvement process that included multiple public open houses and nine Community Sounding Board (CSB) meetings that guided design for the required visible features of the Washington Park project.

Project Details

The Water Bureau’s Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project proposes to build a new below-ground reservoir in the same general footprint as the existing upper Reservoir 3, with a reflecting pool on top. The lower Reservoir 4 basin and the slope to the west are needed to provide landslide abatement; the slope will be restored to its pre-reservoir condition. Reservoir 4 will be disconnected from the public drinking water system and a lowland habitat area/bioswale and a reflecting pool are also proposed in the Reservoir 4 basin. Work will primarily be within the Historic District.

The project addresses major reservoir issues, including recurrent landslide damage, compliance with federal law, seismic vulnerability, and deterioration of the 120 year-old structures.

Additional Information & Contacts

For detailed project information, visit the project webpage or contact Water Bureau Public Information staff by e-mail or at 503-823-3028. Visit the Bureau of Development Services’ website or call 503-823-7300 for more information on the land use review application process.

Portland Water Bureau's Customer Service Walk-In Center Closed on Monday, February 16

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The Portland Water Bureau's Customer Service Walk-In Center will be closed on Monday, February 16 in observance of President’s Day.

The Walk-In Center, located on the first floor of the Portland Building at 1120 SW 5th Avenue, will reopen on Tuesday, February 17 at 8 a.m.

For your convenience you may pay your bill:

  • Online
  • By Visa or MasterCard by calling our automated payment system at 503-823-7770 and pressing 1
  • Leave a payment in the night box located outside the front door at 1120 SW 5th Avenue Portland, OR 97204.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Customer Service