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Portland Water Bureau

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


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

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Join Our Team: Laboratory Coordinator and Water Efficiency Program Manager

By Brian Balla

If you're interested in joining an award-winning public utility where employees thrive on the pride of delivering a life-essential product with world class customer service, the Portland Water Bureau might be just the place for you.

The Water Bureau is a recognized leader in the utility industry. We've achieved this success by investing in the very best people and empowering them to find new and better ways to meet our customer's needs.

The Water Bureau currently employs approximately 560 people. All current job postings with the City of Portland are posted online, and updated weekly. We are an equal opportunity employer that values diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Current Opportunities at the Water Bureau

Position   Emp. Type   Salary   Closing Date/Time Join Our Team 
Laboratory Coordinator  Full Time $28.75 - $40.54 Hourly

Mon. 2/20/17 4:30 PM Pacific Time

 Apply Here!
Water Efficiency Manager Full Time $6,127.00 - $8,196.00 Monthly

Mon. 2/27/17 4:30 PM Pacific Time

Apply Here!

All completed applications for this position must be submitted no later than 4:30 pm, on the closing date and hour of this recruitment. E-mailed and / or faxed applications will not be accepted.

Learn More About the Water Bureau


For more information regarding career opportunities at the Water Bureau, contact (503) 823-3515 or e-mail.

Need Help Paying Your Utility Bill? Check Out the Portland Water Bureau’s Financial Assistance Programs

By Brian Balla

Customers who need help paying their utility bill, or are looking for ways to reduce their bill, are invited to take advantage of the Water Bureau’s variety of financial assistance programs. These programs come in the form of payment arrangements, bill discounts for sewer and water charges, crisis vouchers, fixture repair services, Utility Safety Net program and more.

To learn more about the financial assistance and reduction programs available to you, and how you may qualify visit our Financial Assistance page or contact Customer Service at 503-823-7770 or

TRAFFIC ADVISORY 01/31/17: Large Equipment Deliveries at Washington Park Reservoir Project Site Scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 1; Traffic Delays Expected

By Brian Balla

On Wednesday, Feb. 1, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., two large drill rigs and a large tank will be delivered to the reservoir project site at Washington Park. The three deliveries will be spread throughout the day to reduce the length of individual delays.

All deliveries will enter the site by traveling West Burnside Road, to Southwest Tichner Drive, to Southwest Kingston Avenue, to Southwest Sherwood Boulevard.

After being unloaded, the delivery truck trailers will exit the park using Southwest Park Place.

What Travelers Can Expect                            

  • 20- to 25-minute temporary delays as each delivery truck trailer maneuvers through the park.
  • Delays and slow moving traffic on West Burnside Street, Southwest Tichner Drive, and Southwest Kingston Avenue.
  • Staged flaggers to direct traffic at the following intersections: Southwest Kingston Drive and Southwest Sherwood Boulevard; Southwest Kingston Avenue and Southwest Fairview Boulevard.

Avoid Delays

To avoid delays, plan ahead and detour around the crane’s route. Enter the park using:

  • West Burnside Road to Southwest Skyline Boulevard to Southwest Fairview Boulevard
  • Southwest Canyon Road to Southwest Knights Boulevard
  • Southwest Fairview Boulevard to Southwest Knights Boulevard
  • Southwest Canyon Road to Southwest Knights Boulevard

Exit the park using:

  • Southwest Fairview Boulevard to Southwest Skyline Boulevard to West Burnside Road
  • Southwest Knights Boulevard to Southwest Fairview Boulevard
  • Southwest Knights Boulevard to Southwest Canyon Road

Safety is Priority

Safety is our number one priority when moving any type of heavy equipment into or out of the project worksite.

Park users and travelers are encouraged to move safely around the park. Please watch for detours and signage and follow direction from flaggers. The public is encouraged not follow construction vehicles or buses as they may enter restricted zones. All construction-related traffic impacts are subject to change.

Project Details

The Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project entails constructing a new 12.4-million gallon, seismically reinforced below ground reservoir in the same footprint of existing Reservoir 3 (upper) with a reflecting pool/water feature on top. Existing Reservoir 4 (lower) will be disconnected from the public drinking water system and a lowland wildlife habitat area, bioswale, and reflecting pool will be constructed in the basin.

For additional project information and updates, contact the project hotline at 503-823-7030, e-mail or visit

Water Bureau Finds Additional Cryptosporidium in Bull Run Water: City to continue increased monitoring efforts of drinking water source

By Jaymee Cuti Add a Comment

Today, the Portland Water Bureau received results that Cryptosporidium, a potentially pathogenic microorganism, was detected in a water sample collected Wednesday, January 25, from the Bull Run watershed, which provides drinking water to Portland and neighboring communities. The lab results show that one individual Cryptosporidium oocyst was present in a 50-liter (~13 gallons) sample of water.

At this time, we do not believe there is any increased public health risk as a result of the current detection. The general public is not being asked to take any special precautions. We continue to recommend that people with severely weakened immune systems seek specific advice about drinking water from their health care provider.

The Portland Water Bureau currently does not treat for the parasite Cryptosporidium because of a variance issued by the State of Oregon Health Authority (OHA) in 2012. Instead, the Portland Water Bureau is required to conduct routine monitoring for Cryptosporidium and notify the public of any detections.

This detection at the intake is the third detection this month. January 2nd was the first detection since the Portland Water Bureau began operation under the variance in April 2012. Prior to that, the last time Cryptosporidium was detected was December, 2011, when a single oocyst was also detected.

As required by the conditions of the variance, the Portland Water Bureau had been testing for Cryptosporidium at the source water intake twice a week. Since January 8th, the Portland Water Bureau began monitoring at the source water intake at least four times per week for one year to demonstrate whether the Cryptosporidium concentration in the source water is less than 0.075 oocysts per 1,000 liters.

“While these detections do not indicate an increased public health-risk, we are taking them very seriously.” said Water Bureau Administrator Mike Stuhr. “Public safety is the Water Bureau’s top priority. We will continue increased monitoring at the drinking water
source, and continue close coordination with health officials at all levels to continue to protect public health.”

The City continues to consult with the Multnomah County Health Department and OHA. Public health officials have determined that no special precautions for Portland’s drinking water are currently necessary, aside from the increased monitoring and testing efforts currently underway. Portland-area health departments will also increase public health monitoring for indications of an increase in Cryptosporidium related illness that could be related to drinking water.

“Historically, we cannot find any evidence of a cryptosporidiosis outbreak tied to drinking Bull Run water.” said Multnomah County Deputy Health Officer Dr. Jennifer Vines. The county’s ongoing disease surveillance has shown no unexplained increase in Cryptosporidium cases.

The Water Bureau is continuing a thorough investigation. Wildlife found in the Bull Run are the most likely source of the Cryptosporidium detections, however no specific source has been identified. The Water Bureau will notify the public if any additional precautions are necessary.

Additional information regarding Water Bureau’s treatment variance is available at Customers with questions regarding water quality can call the Water Line at (503) 823-7525.


Happy Anniversary to Suzhou, China’s Benson Bubbler

By Brian Balla

Portland is a special place to live. From Forest Park to the Bull Run Watershed – where Portland gets its clean, fresh water – we are fortunate to live in a place that values its uniqueness and recognizes the importance of preserving its history.

Unveiling of the Benson Bubbler at the Jiangsu Horticultural FestivalOne of the most charming Portland legacies is the Benson Bubbler, the four-bowl bronze drinking fountains dotting downtown’s busy sidewalks, and their one-bowl cousins spread throughout the city. These iconic fountains serve up Bull Run drinking water to Portland’s visitors and residents from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily. The Benson Bubbler water fountain is an enduring legacy reflecting over 100 years of Portland history.

And while most Benson Bubblers are indeed located in Portland’s thriving downtown area, three Benson Bubblers can be found outside of Portland city limits, including one in Pendleton, Oregon; Sapporo, Japan; and Suzhou, China.

This week on Jan. 27 marks the one-year anniversary of Portland City Council voting to allow the Portland-Suzhou Sister City Association (PSSCA) to transfer a Benson Bubbler to Suzhou, China, honoring the 15-year anniversary of Lan Su Chinese Garden. Lan Su Chinese Garden is a product of collaboration between the cities of Portland and Suzhou in Jiangsu Province, a province famous for its Ming Dynasty Gardens. The City of Suzhou is located about 60 miles (100 km) Northwest of Shanghai. The Benson Bubbler arrived safely in Suzhou in February 2016 and was unveiled in April of that same year at the 9th Jiangsu Horticultural Exposition, an event that drew millions of visitors to the shores of Taihu Lake.


In May 2015, the Portland-Suzhou Sister City Association (PSSCA) requested that the City provide a Benson Bubbler in honor of the 15-year anniversary of the Lan Su Chinese Garden, a friendship project between Portland and Suzhou. The Lan Su Chinese Garden is today one of the great cultural treasures of Portland. According to the Lan Su Chinese Garden, it is the most authentic Ming Dynasty Garden outside of China.

Happy anniversary to Suzhou, China’s very own Benson Bubbler!

Learn More

Learn more about the iconic Benson Bubblers, including their history and the bureau’s conservation efforts, by visiting the Water Bureau’s Benson Bubbler page. Then find out more about the Portland-Suzhou Sister Association at No ratepayer funds were spent on the Suzhou Benson Bubbler and none were removed from service or otherwise uninstalled as part of this sister city project.