Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Water Bureau

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

Customer Service: 503-823-7770

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

More Contact Info


Check out the 2019 Drinking Water Quality Report!

The 2019 Drinking Water Quality Report outlines how we are continuing to deliver clean and safe drinking water to nearly a million customers.

Portland’s drinking water comes from two high-quality sources—the Bull Run Watershed and Columbia South Shore Well Field.

What’s in the Report?

The report summarizes water quality results for 2018 and includes information about how we monitor, treat, and distribute your drinking water. The report also provides information on Portland’s drinking water system and how customers can reduce their exposure to lead in drinking water, including by requesting a free-lead-in-water test kit.

Making Excellent Water Better

The report also highlights two major treatment improvements Portland is undertaking. These improvements will provide increased public health protection against lead in household plumbing and Cryptosporidium, an organism that can potentially cause illness. These improvements will also result in more consistent water quality and prepare the water system for future regulations.

How to Access the Report

The Portland Water Bureau is mailing a postcard this week to inform every customer about the availability of this report online. Customers can request a paper copy, either online or by phone.

Do you know someone who could benefit from translated versions of this report? The report is available in Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Spanish. It is also available in screen reader-optimized large print in English.

The report can be found online or by calling the Water Quality Line at 503-823-9444.

Update: June 11 Administrative Review Committee meeting postponed to a later date

Update: The June 11 Administrative Review Committee meeting has been postponed to a later date

The Administrative Review Committee (ARC) reviews ratepayer requests for account adjustments, proposed account actions, and other disputes concerning water, sewer, and/or stormwater accounts. The purpose of the Committee is to review account issues that ratepayers have been unable to resolve with the bureaus’ Customer Services group. The Committee weighs policies, rates and special circumstances when reviewing an account. The Committee may accept the customer’s request, offer with an alternate remedy, or deny the appeal. Administrative Review Committee decisions are bureau decisions.

Date TBD

Pioneer Tower

Bureau of Environmental Services Pioneer Room, 4th Floor

888 SW 5th Avenue

Portland OR 97201

1.  Welcome: Read preamble for ARC.

2.  Public Comments: Members of the public are invited to introduce themselves and to state their interest in attending the meeting. Anyone who wishes to speak about matters pertaining to the ARC will have the floor for two minutes.

3.  New Business: The Administrative Review Committee will hear two customer appeals about water, sewer and/or stormwater billing.

The Administrative Review Committee is made up of:

  • One representative from the Portland Water Bureau, confirmed by the Commissioner-in-Charge.
  • One representative from the Bureau of Environmental Services, confirmed by the Commissioner-in-Charge.
  • One member of the Portland Utility Board.

For more information

City of Portland Water, Sewer, and/or Stormwater Billing Appeal Policy (ADM-14.02)

Questions? Contact us at 503-865-2755 or PWBCustomerService@portlandoregon.gov

The City of Portland ensures meaningful access to City programs, services, and activities to comply with Civil Rights Title VI and ADA Title II laws and reasonably provides: translation, interpretation, modifications, accommodations, alternative formats, auxiliary aids and services. To request these services, contact 503-823-7432, City TTY 503-823-6868, Relay Service: 711.

                                   

June 2019 Update: Washington Park Reservoir Improvement Project

As the weather warms and the Washington Park gardens wake up, crews have been busy making significant headway at the Washington Park Reservoir Improvement Project work site. Accomplishments include:

  • Pouring the first wall sections
  • Setting up stations to infuse concrete with liquid nitrogen which help regulate concrete cooling temperatures
  • Removing of two dead trees outside of the construction work area by Portland Parks & Recreation.
  • Installing the second tower crane

Cooling Concrete with Liquid Nitrogen

Managing the placement and curing of concrete at the Washington Park Reservoir Improvement Project is a delicate act, particularly during the warmer months. As concrete is “batched at the plant” and then is placed and cures, its temperature heats up. During warm weather, it can heat to temperatures that cause thermal stresses and potential concrete damage. To reach the needed strength for the finished concrete, the heat levels need to be controlled to maintain the tolerances required in the reservoir design.

Watch an example video of liquid nitrogen
being injected into concrete.

To ensure the concrete does not overheat during the warmer months, the contractor will cool the concrete with liquid nitrogen. In the Reservoir 4 area, a liquid nitrogen tank and four bays are being temporarily installed. As concrete trucks enter the project site, they will pull into one of the bays where the load will be injected and mixed with liquid nitrogen. Then the truck will move to the construction zone in Reservoir 3 and the concrete will be pumped into the waiting forms.

Things to know about liquid nitrogen:

  • There is the possible presence of fog at the work site. The boiling point of liquid nitrogen is -321 degrees Fahrenheit. When it hits air, it boils and chills the surrounding air, causing the humidity in the air to condense into fog. When this process is in operation, neighbors may notice a fog in the area of Reservoir 4.
  • Liquid nitrogen is cold enough to cause severe frostbite upon contact with living tissue. Workers will be wearing proper safety gear when injecting the nitrogen into the concrete trucks to help prevent contact or inhalation of the extremely cold vapor.
  • A common use of liquid nitrogen is in the freezing and transport of food products.

About this Project

The new 12.4-million gallon, seismically reinforced underground reservoir is being built inside the footprint of the former Reservoir 3. (upper) A new reflection pool on top of the reservoir will retain the historic look and feel of the original. The new reservoir has been engineered to withstand ongoing landside encroachment and potentially catastrophic effects of a major earthquake.

The new reservoir will supply water to Portland’s west side, serving approximately 360,000 people, including all downtown businesses and residents, 20 schools, five hospital complexes, and more than 60 parks.

This system of water conveyance and storage makes Portland a livable and thriving community, ensuring public health and economic viability.

Learn more about this project and the benefits it will provide to our region at portlandoregon.gov/water/wpreservoirs.

Water Bureau Offices Closed for Independence Day on Thursday, July 4

Portland Water Bureau logoIn observance of the Independence Day holiday, Portland Water Bureau offices will be closed on Thursday, July 4.

Offices will reopen on Friday, July 5, 2019 at 8 a.m. The Customer Service Call Center will reopen at 8 a.m. The Customer Service Walk In Center will reopen at 7:30 a.m.

How to Pay Your Utility Bill

During the holiday, Water Bureau customers can pay their bill in the following ways:

  • Online: Click here
  • Phone: Pay by phone by dialing 503-823-7770 and pressing 1
  • Drop off: Leave a payment in the Water Bureau's drop box located at 111 SW Columbia St. (at the corner of SW 1st Ave. and SW Columbia St).

Have a safe and happy holiday!

Water Emergency Hotline

To report a water system emergency, contact the 24/7 Emergency Hotline at 503-823-4874.

Portland Observer: How Self Enhancement, Inc. and the Portland Water Bureau Assist Low Income Customers

This story was reported by The Portland Observer. The full article can be read here.


Representatives from Portland Water Bureau and Self Enhancement, Inc. are on a mission to let economically struggling families know about the financial assistance options the city utility offers, which have been increased this past year.

The Water Bureau has expanded discounts for qualifying low income households and those in temporary financial crisis, opened a relocated and more transportation-friendly office, and established community partnerships with culturally specific groups, like Self Enhancement Inc., the non-profit serving the African American community of Portland.

All those actions spelled good news for Iva, a senior citizen who was living off of a fixed social security income when health issues brought her in and out of the hospital for a six week stretch. Her water bills fell behind and she accrued late fees, unable to do much else other than focus on her health.

Thanks to Water Bureau’s utility crisis voucher—which recently increased from $150 to $500—Iva was able to get back on top of her payments after she got well.