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The City of Portland, Oregon

Nick Fish (In Memoriam)

City of Portland Commissioner

phone: 503-823-3589


1221 S.W. 4th, Room 240, Portland, OR 97204

Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish Announces That City Will Sell “Water House”

August 13, 2013

Today, Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish announced that the Portland Water Bureau will sell the "Water House," at 1616 NE 140th Ave. in the Russell Neighborhood.

After being assigned the Portland Water Bureau by Mayor Charlie Hales on June 4, 2013, Commissioner Fish directed the bureau to sell the house.

Through a competitive bidding process, H&H Real Estate has been selected to serve as the seller’s agent. H&H has recommended an asking price of $475,000.

The Portland Water Bureau invested close to $950,000 in hard and soft costs to build the house. The bureau expects to take a loss on the sale of the property.

"The Water Bureau is under new management," said Commissioner Nick Fish. "We are committed to stabilizing rates and to high levels of accountability and transparency."

"We are going to sell this house and use the proceeds to stabilize rates," added Fish. "My focus is on delivering the best water in the country to over 900,000 Oregonians."


The Water House was a demonstration project showcasing water conservation practices through an innovative local green building partnership. It was built on vacant surplus property – the site of two decommissioned groundwater wells. The project was a public-private partnership with over 40 local partners and sponsors.

About 2,500 people have toured the house since January 2011. The house was part of the Build It Green! Home Tour twice and was also on the Ultimate Open House Tour. It has hosted workshops and classes on greywater use, low-use irrigation, and other water efficiency practices.

The house is Earth Advantage Platinum, Energy Star certified, and is the first WaterSense certified home in Oregon. Water-friendly landscaping features include a rain garden, eco-lawn, and plants from the Portland Nursery. The floor of the home is made of wood re-claimed from a school gym.

Water House Fact Sheet