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Washington Park Reservoir Project: Public Hearing before Land Use Hearings Officer Rescheduled for November 2

In order to comply with federal and state mandates and ensure a healthy, resilient, and secure water system, the Portland Water Bureau is moving forward with a project to update the Washington Park reservoir site. 

The public hearing before the Land Use Hearings Officer on the
Type III Conditional Use, Environmental, and Tree Reviews application
for the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project
is rescheduled to 9:30 a.m., Monday, November 2, 2015, at 1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Portland, Oregon.

Public Hearing Rescheduled
During the public hearing, initially scheduled for September 9, 2015, the Hearings Officer will listen to public testimony and evaluate the Water Bureau’s Type III Conditional Use, Environmental, and Tree Reviews application. 

The Type III application addresses development impacts to the site, park, and surrounding neighborhoods, tree protection, natural-area restoration, and construction and traffic management for the proposed project.

Public Comment Period Extended 
Due to the rescheduling of the hearing, the comment period has been extended.

The public is invited to review the proposal and submit comments
on the application by Monday, November 2, 2015.

Comments can be e-mailed to or mailed to the below address.

Stacey Castleberry
Bureau of Development Services, Suite 4500
RE: LU 15-169656
1900 SW 4th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97201

A courtesy copy of the application submitted to BDS is posted on the Water Bureau’s project website at  To view or obtain copies of the official document, contact BDS directly.

Project Details
The Water Bureau’s Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project proposes to build a new below-ground reservoir in the same general footprint as the existing upper Reservoir 3, with a reflecting pool on top. 

The lower Reservoir 4 basin and the slope west of it are needed to provide landslide abatement; the slope will be restored to its pre-reservoir condition. Reservoir 4 will be disconnected from the public drinking water system and a lowland habitat area/bioswale and a reflecting pool are also proposed in the Reservoir 4 basin. Work will primarily be within the Historic District.

The project addresses major reservoir issues, including recurrent landslide damage, compliance with federal law, seismic vulnerability, and deterioration of the 120 year-old structures.

The Washington Park Reservoir Project includes three Land Use Reviews (LUR): 

1. Type IV Demolition Review application: The application proposed the removal of the Weir Building (screen house), portions of lower Reservoir 4’s basin, and upper Reservoir 3’s basin in Washington Park.

2. Type III Historic Review application: The application describes the proposed project’s construction of a covered reservoir, reflecting pools, lowland habitat area/bioswale, and walkways along with historic preservation and rehabilitation actions.      

3. Type III Conditional Use/ Environmental/Tree Reviews application: The application addresses development impacts to the site, park, and surrounding neighborhoods, tree protection, natural-area restoration, and construction and traffic management for the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project.

Before work permits are issued or construction begins, all applications must be approved.

The applications are a result of a robust public involvement process that included multiple public open houses and nine Community Sounding Board meetings that guided design for the required visible features of the Washington Park project. For more information on the Type III and IV LUR processes, visit the BDS website.

Additional Information & Contacts
For detailed project information, visit the project webpage or contact Water Bureau Public Information staff at 503-823-3028 or by e-mail.  Visit the Bureau of Development Services’ website or call 503-823-7300 for more information on the land use review application process. 


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