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Portland Water Bureau

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GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

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

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A BIG Success Story

By Lindsay Wochnick Add a Comment

BIG program logoThe Portland Water Bureau’s Business, Industry, and Government (BIG) Water Efficiency Program offers information, resources, and assistance to industrial, commercial, and institutional customers of the Water Bureau.

BIG staff work alongside customers to create a water-use history report, identify potential savings, and provide an on-site evaluation of water using devices based on specific needs. Here’s one success story from the BIG Program. 

IRC Aluminum & Stainless
Located in North Portland, IRC Aluminum & Stainless is a non‐ferrous metal distributor that provides water‐jet cutting services to the northwest. Water‐jet cutting is a unique technology that can cut a variety of materials with no mechanical stress or heat effect. High pressure pumps used to create the water jets rely on large quantities of continuous “single pass” cooling water that discharges to the sewer after one use.

Cooling is typically accomplished using chillers and/or cooling towers but IRC was in need of a customized system to meet the requirements of their unique operation.

IRC's water jet at work.In September 2012, the Water Bureau's Water Conservation Program Coordinator met with IRC personnel to help improve the company’s water efficiency and reduce environmental impacts.

Working together, they developed an innovative design that combined the reuse of pump cooling water together with “free cooling” to the atmosphere using outdoor storage tanks.

The system now reuses cooling water in various cutting operation areas, providing more savings than a chiller system alone. The resulting design reduced cooling water demand by approximately 1.6 million gallons per year or 41 percent of the total use.

IRC’s high capital cost to install the system was reduced by an incentive offered by the Water Bureau.

To read more BIG Water Efficiency Program success stories, visit our Commercial Water Efficiency website.

Washington Park Reservoir Project: Type III Historic Review Application Update

By Lindsay Wochnick Add a Comment

On August 10, 2015, a public hearing was held before the Historic Landmarks Commission to review the Portland Water Bureau’s Type III Historic Review application for the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project.

During testimony, a member of the public requested that the record be left open for submission of new evidence.

The Type III application describes the proposed project’s historic preservation and rehabilitation actions and construction of a covered reservoir, reflecting pools, lowland habitat area/bioswale, and walkways. These features will offer the public enhanced access to the new surface water features and classically-designed gatehouses, dams, and related structures.

After a discussion, the Commission decided the following: 

DATE ACTION
August 10 – 24, 2015 The record will remain open for submission of new evidence from August 10, 2015 to 4:30 p.m., August 24, 2015.
August 24 – 31, 2015 Response to new evidence will be accepted from August 24, 2015 to 4:30 p.m., August 31, 2015.
August 31 – September 8, 2015 The Water Bureau can submit a rebuttal to the new evidence and response from August 31, 2015 to 4:30 p.m., September 8, 2015. The end date was extended one-day from September 7 due to the Labor Day holiday.
September 14, 2015 The Commission will reconvene to take action on the item. No public testimony will be taken.

Submit, Review New Evidence
New evidence on the Type III Historic Resource Review application can be e-mailed to Hillary.Adam@portlandoregon.gov, faxed to 503-823-5630, or mailed to:

Hillary Adam
Land Use Services, Bureau of Development Services
RE: LU 15-169671 HR
1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Suite 4500
Portland, OR 97201

A courtesy copy of the application and subsequent updates submitted to BDS are posted on the Water Bureau’s project webpage at www.portlandoregon.gov/water/wpreservoirs/LURIIIHR. To view or obtain copies of the official document, you must get it from BDS. 

To review and submit response to new evidence, visit http://www.portlandoregon.gov/BDS

Land Use Review chart updatesLand Use Review Application Background
The Washington Park Reservoir Project includes three Land Use Reviews (LUR) detailed in the chart to the right:

1. Type IV Demolition Review application

2. Type III Historic Review application    

3. Type III Conditional Use/ Environmental/Tree Reviews application

Before work permits are issued or construction begins, all applications must be approved.

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

For more information on the Type III and IV LUR processes, visit the BDS website.

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 west of it 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 at 503-823-3028 or by e-mail. Visit the Bureau of Development Services’ website or call 503-823-7300 for more information on the land use review application process.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Join Portland Water at the Jade District Night Market Events

By Lindsay Wochnick Add a Comment

Mark your calendars and join the Portland Water Bureau at the second annual Jade District Night Market on August 15 and 22 from 5 to 10 p.m. at the Portland Community College SE Campus (2305 SE 82nd Ave).

Jade Night Market eventsWater Bureau employees will be on hand to address water-related questions and concerns, offer information on how the Water Bureau can help with bill assistance, discuss convenient ways to pay and manage your sewer-water bill, and advise on ways to use water efficiently and cost effectively.

The Jade District Night Market events are family friendly and include retail and food vendors and live entertainment. The goals of the market is to help create a sense of community on SE 82nd Avenue by bringing local business owners together and drawing the larger Portland community to the multi-ethnic neighborhood.

The Jade District is the area surrounding SE 82nd Avenue and SE Division Street. The district was designated by the Portland Development Commission (PDC) as a Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative (NPI) district in 2011. The NPI is a public/private partnership that aims to transform underserved commercial districts in east Portland into engines of economic growth without displacing the communities that reside there.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Washington Park Reservoir Project: Comment Period Open, Hearing Schedule on Type III Conditional Use, Environmental, and Tree Reviews Application

By Lindsay Wochnick Add a Comment

ApplicationPublic Comment Period Open
The public is now invited to review and submit comments to the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) on the Water Bureau’s Type III Conditional Use, Environmental, and Tree Reviews application.

Public comments can be e-mailed to Stacey.Castleberry@portlandoregon.gov or mailed to the below address. Please reference Land Use Review number LU 15-169656 in any communications.

Stacey Castleberry
Bureau of Development Services
Suite 4500
1900 SW 4th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97201

Testify at Public Hearing
A public hearing before the Land Use Hearing Officer is scheduled for Wednesday, September 9, 2015, at 9 a.m. at 1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Portland, Oregon.

During the hearing, the Hearings Officer will listen to public testimony and evaluate the Water Bureau’s Type III Conditional Use, Environmental, and Tree Reviews application.  The decision of the Hearings Officer can be appealed to City Council.

The application addresses development impacts to the site, park, and surrounding neighborhoods, tree protection, natural-area restoration, and construction and traffic management for the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project.

A courtesy copy of the application deemed complete by BDS is posted on the Water Bureau’s project webpage. Note that BDS maintains the official application record which tracks updates and revisions over time.

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 west of it 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.

Chart showing Land Use Review Application ProcessBackground
The Washington Park Reservoir Project includes three Land Use Reviews (LUR). Click on the chart to the right for detailed information. 

1. Type IV Demolition Review application: The application proposed the removal of the Weir Building (screen house), portions of lower Reservoir 4’s basin, and upper Reservoir 3’s basin in Washington Park.

2. Type III Historic Review application: The application describes historic preservation and rehabilitation actions and proposes construction of a covered reservoir, reflecting pools, lowland habitat area/bioswale, and walkways. 

3. Type III Conditional Use/ Environmental/Tree Reviews application: The application addresses development impacts to the site, park, and surrounding neighborhoods, tree protection, natural-area restoration, and construction and traffic management for the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project.

Before work permits are issued or construction begins, all applications must be approved.

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

For more information on the Type III and IV LUR processes, visit the BDS website.

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

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information

Volunteer Opportunity at Powell Butte Nature Park

By Lindsay Wochnick Add a Comment

Restoration work at Powell Butte Nature ParkWhat?
Members of the public are invited to volunteer alongside the Friends of Powell Butte Nature Park, Hands On Greater Portland, and Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) to perform needed maintenance and restoration work at Powell Butte Nature Park. 

When?
Saturday, August 8
9 a.m. - 12 noon

Where?
Meet at Ellis Street Park Entrance, at SE Ellis St & SE 145th.

Tips
Volunteers are encouraged to wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, and sturdy shoes. Bring a backpack, water bottle, and sunhat. Instructions, tools, gloves, and small treats will be provided.

Volunteers must be at least age 16 (without adult supervision) or age 8 (with adult supervision). Younger children must be accompanied by adults, and volunteers under age 18 must have a parent sign our liability form.

Please be aware that a major construction project is under completion within the Powell Butte Nature Park. Volunteers are reminded to stay on open designated park trails during the restoration event.

Volunteers are asked to RSVP online to Hands On Portland.

Lindsay Wochnick
Public Information