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


More Contact Info

Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project: May 2016 Update

In order to comply with federal and state mandates and ensure a healthy, resilient, and secure water system, the Portland Water Bureau and Oregon general contractor Hoffman Construction Company are moving forward with an eight-year capital improvement project to update the Washington Park reservoir site at 2403 SW Jefferson Street.

The project includes building a new, seismically reinforced below ground reservoir.

The new reservoir will preserve the historic drinking water function provided by the original reservoirs at the site and be engineered to withstand ongoing landslide encroachment and potentially catastrophic effects of a major earthquake. A reflecting pool/water feature will be constructed on top in the same general footprint as the historical Reservoir 3.

Reservoir 4 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.

When complete and online, the new underground reservoir will supply water to Portland’s west side and serve more than 360,000 people, including all downtown businesses and residents, the Oregon Zoo, more than 60 parks, three hospital complexes, and 20 Portland public schools. 


  • Proposed ScheduleJuly 1, 2016: Construction begins
  • December 31, 2019: New Reservoir 3 construction completed
  • December 31, 2020: Reservoir 4 disconnected from the public water system
  • 2023-2024: Project completed

The project will span eight years. The first two years (2016-2018) will trigger the most significant impacts to traffic, transportation, and parking in the park. Washington Park users are encouraged to travel to and move safely around the park and its attractions by using the bus and light rail, walking, biking and skating, and taking the free park shuttle. Visit and for transit options. 

Upcoming Work: Current – September 11, 2016 

Tree Pruning / Inspection Within project site, around the reservoirs, along SW Sacajawea Boulevard, SW Lewis Clark Way, & SW Madison Court          
Construction Fence Installation Within project site          
Placement of Mobile Field Offices Project site, below Reservoir 4          
Vegetation / Tree Removal Around the reservoirs, by SW Sacajawea and Sherwood Boulevards          
Erosion Control Within project site          
Disconnect Reservoir 3 Inlet and Outlet Piping Within project site          
Remove Weir Building Within project site, east of Reservoir 3          
Disconnect Reservoir 4 Inlet and Outlet Piping Within project site, by Reservoir 4          
Cut and Cap Piping Within project site, by Reservoir 4          
Removal of Stilling Tank inside Gatehouse 4 Within project site, by Gatehouse 4          
Construct Shoring Wall (begins mid-Sept) Within project site, by Reservoir 3          
DISCLAIMER: The chart is intended solely for general purposes and guidance only. Target dates for beginning and completion of each task are subject to change.

IMap showing traffic delay locationsmpacts: May – September 11, 2016

  • Traffic Delays: Travelers may experience intermittent traffic flow delays up to 20 minutes on SW Sacajawea and SW Sherwood Boulevards due to pre-construction maintenance and removal of vegetation and trees in the project site.
  • Parking: All parking will remain open on SW Lewis Clark Way and SW Sacajawea and SW Sherwood Boulevards.
  • Park Facilities: All park facilities will remain open.
  • TriMet Bus Service: TriMet Bus Line 63 may have minor delays. Stop ID 6177 at SW Sacajawea/ Sherwood may be intermittently affected depending on pre-construction activity. Check for real time updates.

The project is part of the Water Bureau’s Capital Improvement Program. It is funded by revenue bond proceeds backed by the utility ratepayers’ fund. Currently, 100 percent of the project’s design is complete. With high confidence, the Water Bureau now appraises the total project budget for the life of the project at $190 million (+/- 10 percent).

In May 2016, the Water Bureau project team presented to Portland City Council two financial items related to the project. 

  • Guaranteed Maximum Price Contract: The City Council voted in unanimous support of a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) project contract with General Contractor Hoffman Construction Company (HCC). The approved GMP sets the construction contract’s maximum price at $152,181,850. Under this legal agreement, HCC will be compensated for actual costs incurred during the construction plus a fixed fee, subject to maximum amount noted above. Learn more here.
  • Community Benefits Plan: Council members reviewed and listened to public testimony on a Community Benefits Funding ordinance related to the project. The ordinance authorizes a one-time $1,145,500 dedicated fund amount from the project’s budget to create economic opportunities and benefits for Disadvantaged, Minority, Women, and Emerging Small Businesses (DMWESB) within the local community. City Council will vote on the ordinance June 1. Learn more here. 

KEEPING YOU UP-TO-DATE To contact us with questions or concerns or to change your preferences on how to receive project updates:


Please review our Code of Conduct rules before posting a comment to this site. Your comment will be visible to site administrators only.

Submit a Comment
Name (optional)
E-mail (optional)
 Remember Info Yes   No
Spam Prevention In the Pacific Northwest, what state is Portland in?