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Portland Water Bureau

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

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

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

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Cold-Weather Crafts for Cooped-Up Kids

By Brian Balla

A little taste of snow this year has little Portlanders hoping for more! Even if it doesn’t snow again, you and your kids can still make your own snowy crafts to while away the chilly Oregon days before school starts again.

This year’s snowpack in the Bull Run watershed is one way that Portland Water provides water year round. Snowpack happens as snow falls and is weighted down over time. As the weather warms, the snow melts and contributes cold water to Portland’s water supply. While the Bull Run watershed is primarily a rain-fed system, snowpack is always welcome.

Erupting Fake Snow
from pagingfunmums.com

Supplies:

- 1 cup of baking soda
- Can of shaving cream/foam
- Glitter
- Vinegar

How To:

  1. Pour your baking soda into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add about 1/2 of the can of shaving cream. You can put in as much as you like until you have a good, powdery consistency.
  3. Add as much glitter as you like. Now give your mixture a good stir.
  4. At this point you should have a mixture that can be balled up like a snowball. Place your snow into a large container and pour your vinegar over the top to watch it foam up.

DIY Snow Globes
from crazylittleprojects.com

Supplies:

- Leftover jars from baby food, sauces or jams, or purchased jars from craft stores
- A little toy to put inside
- Glycerin (available at drug stores)
- Glitter
- Heavy Duty Glue (Gorilla glue, E6000, Epoxy, etc.)

How To:

  1. Put a little glue on the bottom of your toy. Place it on the lid of your jar and press it down a little to get it firmly in place. Let the glue dry for 10 minutes.
  2. Fill your jar with Bull Run water from your tap. Put one small squirt of glycerin in it (this is going to make your “snow” float better.) Add a pinch of glitter. Try to find a balance with the glitter: too much and your snow globe may appear hazy, too little and you won’t have enough snow.
  3. Hot glue the lid in place and shake it up!

Crystal Sun Catchers
from babbledabledo.com
Recommended for children 8+

Supplies:

- Epsom Salt
- Clear Recycled Plastic Lids -- use the clearest you can find, like the iced coffee or salsa lids found at restaurants
- Water
- Empty Jar
- Bowl or glass measuring cup
- Microwave (optional)
- Tray
- String
- Exacto knife/Pin

How To:

  1. Add 1 cup of Epsom salt to an empty glass jar.
  2. Add 1 cup of Bull Run water to a microwave safe bowl. Heat the water in the microwave for 45 seconds. Alternatively use very hot tap water and skip the microwave.
  3. Pour the water into the jar with the salt. Do this quickly so that the water is warm. Stir the salt and water for 1-2 minutes to dissolve the salt.
  4. Place several plastic lids on a flat-bottomed tray in a sunny location where they can remain undisturbed. The crystals are very fragile, so make as many as you can in case of accidents.
  5. Let the liquid in your jar cool a bit and then pour off some of the excess liquid from your jar into the recycled plastic lids. Use just enough to cover the bottom of the lid. Be careful not to overfill the lids.
  6. Place your lids in sunny location or under a warm lamp. Depending on how much liquid has been added it will take a few hours or a day to start crystallizing. At first the lid will look like it’s just full of water, but be patient!
  7. When the liquid has completely evaporated your crystal sun catcher is ready! You will be able to see lovely crystal structures from both side of the lid.
  8. VERY carefully poke a small hole in the edge of the lid and thread a piece of string through the hole. Tie in a knot and hang your sun catcher up!

Note: The sun catcher in the photo was freshly made. The salt that forms these crystals will eventually dry up and whiten, meaning that your crystals are only temporary.

Northwest Portland Greenleaf Pump Station Upgrade Coming Summer 2017

By Brian Balla

The Portland Water Bureau is committed to upgrading the city’s aging water system to better serve its customers. One way we’re doing that is by replacing the Greenleaf pump station in Northwest Portland. Built in 1951, the Greenleaf pump station provides water to the Penridge Tank which feeds the local water distribution system. This configuration can no longer meet the fire suppression needs of the area it serves.

Beginning in summer 2017, the existing pump station will be replaced with three energy efficient pumps for drinking water needs and two large pumps to supply adequate fire flows. The Penridge Tank will be disconnected from the water system. The new pumps -- housed in a 1,300 square foot building -- will then continually feed high-quality water directly into the distribution system. The construction will take place on Water Bureau property and will take approximately 18 months. The Willis Building will remain as is.

This is just one project that will better serve our customers and conserve energy resources!

TRAFFIC ADVISORY 12/16/16: Water Main Repair Closes SW 2nd Between SW Jefferson Street and SW Madison Street

By Brian Balla

UPDATE -- Dec. 16, 2016 at 4:07 p.m.

The water main break has been repaired. Our Maintenance and Construction crew is currently back-filling and flushing the line. Road conditions will be restored shortly.

###

Portland Water Bureau crews are responding to a water main break on SW 2nd Avenue between SW Jefferson Street and SW Madison Street. No intersections are affected.

A Portland Water Bureau Maintenance & Construction crew is on site and have closed down SW 2nd Avenue between SW Jefferson Street and SW Madison Street.

The main is an 16-inch cast iron pipe from 1906.

At this time, water service for the area has not been interrupted and no customers are out of water.

The traveling public is reminded to stay alert and use caution as traffic may suddenly slow or stop. To avoid traffic delays, motorists are encouraged to use alternate routes around the work site.

The Portland Water Bureau’s Maintenance & Construction crews are ready to respond to emergencies, including water main breaks, 24-hours a day, seven days a week. On average, crews respond to 200 main breaks a year.

This advisory will be updated throughout the day.

TRAFFIC ADVISORY 12/15/16: Water Main Repair Closes SE 82nd South of SE Foster Road

By Brian Balla

UPDATE -- Dec. 16, 2016 at 4:03 p.m.

Our Maintenance and Construction crew is currently plumbing about 30 feet of new main and replacing a line valve. Work is expected to be completed by 7 p.m. The Oregon Department of Transportation will be taking over at this point and expects to restore road conditions by Monday, Dec. 19.

###

UPDATE -- Dec. 16, 2016 7:30 a.m.

SE 82nd Avenue at SE Ellis Street will remain closed today until a water main break can be repaired. The volume of water in the break suggests that significant sections of the pipe will need to be removed and replaced.

Water service to businesses along SE 82nd Avenue from SE Foster Road to SE Woodstock Boulevard and homes on SE Knight Street are disrupted. Services on SE Ellis Street between SE 78th and SE 82nd will be shut off soon to make repairs.

###

This advisory will be updated throughout the day. 

Portland Water Bureau crews are responding to a water main break in the northbound lanes of SE 82nd Avenue just south of SE Foster Road.

At this time, Portland Police and Fire bureaus are on site and have closed down SE 82nd Avenue until crews can assess and repair the damaged water pipe.

The main is an 8-inch cast iron pipe from 1912.

At this time, no homes are out of water service.

The traveling public is reminded to stay alert and use caution as traffic may suddenly slow or stop. To avoid traffic delays, motorists are encouraged to use alternate routes around the work site.

The Portland Water Bureau’s Maintenance & Construction crews are ready to respond to emergencies, including water main breaks, 24-hours a day, seven days a week. On average, crews respond to 200 main breaks a year.

For updates, follow the Portland Water Bureau Twitter account.

Make Every Drop Count!

By Brian Balla

In an average home, 22 gallons of water are lost to leakage each day – that’s more than $114 per year on your sewer, stormwater, and water bill.

The most common culprits are leaking toilets or dripping faucets. If your water usage is higher than usual or averages more than eight CCF per person every three months (eight CCF equates to 5,984 gallons of water), you may have a leak. 

All water services in Portland are metered. Meter readings determine the water and sewer charges on your quarterly bill. Reading your meter is a great way to detect a leak if you have one.

Saving Water Makes Sense!

Check out the Portland Water Bureau's Yes! You Can Find a Water Leak! brochure for ways to discover leaks and simple repair actions.

Here to Help

Portland Water Bureau Customer Service
For questions about your bill or more information on finding leaks, contact Customer Service at 503-823-7770 or PWBCustomerService@portlandoregon.gov

Portland Water Bureau Water Conservation Program
The Portland Water Bureau provides free water conservation devices and materials. To order, visit www.portlandoregon.gov/water/conservation or call 503-823-4527.