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The City of Portland, Oregon

Environmental Services

working for clean rivers

Phone: 503-823-7740

Fax: 503-823-6995

1120 SW 5th Ave, Suite 613, Portland, OR 97204

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Life in the Floodplain: Can working with nature reduce your flood insurance bill?


In the Lents and Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhoods near Johnson Creek, residents face challenges from both flooding AND expensive flood insurance. The Lents Collaborative, which includes Environmental Services, has the potential to fix both.

Some East Portland homes were built within the Johnson Creek floodplain and experience occasional flooding  

The work is driven by a simple idea: by restoring nature - so that natural systems such as wetlands reduce flooding - we can restore communities.  We’ve done it before. Perhaps the most dramatic example of the power of working with nature is the Foster Floodplain Natural Area. Environmental Services worked with the community over a number of years to move homes and broaden and restore the creek and surrounding wetlands to better absorb water as well as provide habitat for salmon and other wildlife. Before the project, Foster Road flooded about every other year. Today, flooding is expected a couple of times each decade.

Neighbors no longer have the stress and expense of cleaning up after frequent floods. And East Portland neighbors have a world-class natural area that is a point of pride. Now we are building on the model to further reduce flooding in the Lents and Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhoods.

The first Life in the Floodplain event, October 2016

Neighbors and others are invited to the Life in the Floodplain Community Meeting on Saturday, June 3rd  to learn about a new program by Lents Collaborative participant the Portland Housing Bureau to help homeowners in the Lents and Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhoods save money on their flood insurance.

It’s a free event with food and raffle prizes!

Life in the Floodplain Community Meeting

When: Saturday, June 3rd, 2017, Noon to 2 p.m.

Where: Earl Boyles Elementary School, 10822 SE Bush Street, Portland, OR 97266

Students from Portland State University will share the results of their year-long community listening project, done in partnership with local Green Lents. Hear how living in the Johnson Creek floodplain affects your neighbors and about efforts to reduce flooding.

Share your thoughts about flooding and flood insurance with elected officials and learn how the community, the City of Portland and State of Oregon are coming together, through the Lents Stabilization and Job Creation Collaborative, to find long-term solutions to flooding in the neighborhood. Environmental Services leads the Collaborative’s efforts on flood mitigation and floodplain restoration.

Registration optional: Life in the Floodplain Community Meeting. For more information, contact


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