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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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Southeast Interceptor Sewer Repair

Updated July 28, 2017

Button. Click to sign up for email updatesConstruction continues on an Environmental Services project in inner southeast Portland to repair the deep, large-diameter Southeast Interceptor sewer line that is deteriorating due to age. The repairs will extend the life of the sewer and protect public health, water quality, and the environment. The city built the large-diameter Southeast Interceptor in 1954. It runs parallel to the Willamette River under inner southeast neighborhoods and is between 5 to 6 feet wide and 25 to 54 feet below the surface.

Two segments of the Southeast Interceptor require repairs. For the project map, click here.


Crews are working in the southernmost segment at SE 16th Avenue and SE Pershing Street. Over the next few weeks, they will move northward into SE Powell Boulevard, SE Gideon Street, SE 11th Avenue, and SE Division Street as they complete work at each manhole access location (see map). Work at some manholes may last up to two months. Crews may be working at multiple locations at the same time.

Work Hours

Work in the southern segment will occur during the day from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Work zones and construction hours are illustrated on the project map.

Night work will occur only in the northern segment of the project (NE Davis to SE Stark) from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday through Saturday. Call the noise hotline at 503-823-8266 to report concerns about nighttime construction noise.

A quiet generator will be running all hours, all days (24/7) in all segments of the project to pump sewage and stormwater from the sewer line so that crews can safely work inside the sewer pipe. Noise mitigation measures will reduce the generator noise so that most adjacent properties should not be disturbed by the noise.

Construction Methods

The city's contractor will repair approximately 7,400 feet of the deep and large-diameter Southeast Interceptor sewer line. Crews will access the sewer from manholes along the Interceptor as illustrated on the project map. Crews will drill small holes through the sewer pipe walls and then pump cement grout through the holes to fill voids outside the pipe that have developed over time. This will also stop infiltration leaks that have allowed groundwater to seep into the sewer pipe.

Using equipment that will be contained on a 40-foot semi-tractor trailer, crews will mix the cement grout and then pump it through hoses running down into the sewer pipe and through the small holes they drilled into the pipe walls. This process will require ventilation of the sewer pipe system to provide air supply to crews working inside the pipe.

What to Expect During Construction

You can expect the following activities and impacts with this sewer repair project:

  • The sewer repair method for this project can be completed from inside the sewer line and will not likely require digging trenches in the roadway.
  • Equipment that generates noise will include vactor trucks, compressors, generators, ventilation fans, and other trucks and related equipment. Night work in the northern segment of the project will also require lighting of the project area.
  • Vactor trucks will be in the area to operate vacuum pumps necessary to clean the pipes and remove material during construction. Vactor trucks generate noise and may be in place for several hours at a time.
  • There may be periods of inactivity between construction phases due to a variety of factors including weather, subcontractor schedules, and availability of materials.
  • A city inspector will be on-site during work hours and may be able to assist you with an immediate need during construction.
  • Sewer, water, and other utilities will remain in service during construction.

Traffic Impacts

You can expect the following traffic controls and impacts during construction:

  • Accessing the sewer line through manholes will require temporary lane closures, which will require traffic control and construction signage. Where needed, traffic will be routed around the worksites.
  • Traffic controls (cones, flaggers, temporary barriers, etc.) will be in place only during work periods and removed daily where possible.
  • Local access to all properties will be maintained, but construction may create delays.
  • On-street parking will be temporarily removed in and near the work zones to create a safe work environment and to stage equipment and materials.

For more information

If you would like more information about the project or have questions and concerns you’d like to discuss, please call or email:

Cheryl Kuck
Community Outreach
Phone: 503-823-7898

Please include your name, property address and project name (Southeast Interceptor) in your voicemail and email so we can provide you more details about what to expect in front of your property. Also, please write "SEI" in the subject line of your email. Click SIGN UP! to sign up for periodic email updates.

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