WaterWorks | August/September 2010 

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In this issue:
Youth Conservation Corps

Meet the Team -
Tim Hall

Nevue Ngan mitigates construction impacts

Partner Focus - Centennial Neighborhood Asssociation

TimMeet the Team
Tim Hall
Before a Portland Water Bureau capital construction project starts, you will find Tim Hall, senior public outreach coordinator, out in the community. He'll be talking with people - especially residents and businesses affected by the construction - about the reasons a project is being built and how construction may affect them.

For more than three years Tim has been actively working with homeowners living near Powell Butte as well as park users to address their concerns about the reservoir project and to act on their suggestions. Using posters on park kiosks, articles in community newspapers, public meetings and presentations to local neighborhood associations and interest groups, Tim keeps the public updated on the project's status. He also monitors construction activities to determine if there are any pending community impacts such as road closures, dust and noise.

You'll frequently find Tim at community events like the recent East Portland Expo explaining the work on Powell Butte and the upcoming reservoir construction at Kelly Butte, also located in Southeast Portland. Public safety is also a top priority for him.

"Updating and improving Portland's 100-year-old water system never stops," says Tim. "My job is helping people understand how the Water Bureau is working to ensure that when they turn on the faucet, clean, safe water flows out of the tap."
Learn more
Portland Water Bureau/Powell Butte Reservoir

Portland Parks & Recreation/Powell Butte Nature Park

Friends of Powell Butte

Centennial Neighborhood Association

Read past issues
Road Ahead
Visit our archives to read past issues of WaterWorks.

Youth Conservation Corps tours site, helps with maintenance

The Youth Conservat
ion Corps Summer Program is an eight-week program that employs teens to work in Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) natural areas. The program's goal is educating, training and helping youth prepare for the world of work. They learn about the natural environment while carrying out vital trail maintenance throughout PP&R's park system. The crews perform a variety of duties, including trail maintenance, tree maintenance, invasive species removal, habitat enhancement and protection. They also educate younger kids about the environment. This summer there were 57 teens in the program.

The Summer 2010 Youth Conservation Corps work included: pruning growth surrounding the trails; re-grading and re-routing trails; building temporary fences; cleaning up and resurfacing trails; pruning and "low limbing" trees; watering; and mulching and weeding around trees.

Recently the group toured the Powell Butte excavation site as part of  the weekly "enrichment days" that the teens have the opportunity to attend. In addition to touring the Powell Butte site, the students made a trip to the Bull Run Watershed, the Columbia Blvd. Wastewater Treatment Plant in North Portland, Ape Cave in Southwest Washington near Mount St. Helens, and the Tillamook Forestry Center.

Nevue Ngan works to keep Powell Butte looking like Powell Butte

Nevue Ngan Associates specializes in landscape architecture, urban design and green infrastructure. Partners Ben Ngan and Bo Nevue (left to right in photo) have been working together for 17 years. As a subcontractor to CH2M Hill on the Powell Butte 2 Reservoir project, Bo and Ben are continually listening to, interpreting and balancing input from park users, the Portland Water Bureau, Portland Parks & Recreation and the design team. Nevue Ngan's role is to incorporate that input and information into a plan that respects the butte's natural habitat conditions and also mitigates impacts resulting from construction of the new reservoir, underground utilities and the new park facilities.

"Our job is to consider all construction impacts and their effects on the park and users," says Bo. "We then create plans that mitigate and restore the site from disturbances during construction. We think about how to do it in a way that respects the existing ecology of the butte and perhaps makes it an even better nature park." Nevue Ngan's work also helps the City's bureaus and design team work together efficiently to achieve the overall goals of the project.
Ben and Bo say that they both also benefit greatly from the public's expertise. "There are people who love these parks," says Bo. "You have to really listen to them and try to accommodate their ideas, while also supporting the City's goals. In our role, we know a little bit about everything and can explain the interconnectedness to the public."
The ultimate goal is to ensure that the butte ends up in a condition better than before construction. If trees need to be rem
oved, more trees will be replanted. In one case, an existing trail was realigned to lessen the impact on an old-growth cedar tree, which is on the heritage tree list.
Working with Nevue Ngan are three subcontractors: Esther Lev (ecologist), Pacific Habitat Services (environment design), and Sea Reach (interpretive design). Look for information about those project partners in upcoming issues of WaterWorks.


Partner focus - Centennial Neighborhood Association

Centennial Neighborhood Association's interest in the Powell Butte 2 Reservoir project has multiple facets. Half of the neighborhood association residents get their water from the Portland system, and half get their water from Rockwood. Powell Butte figures prominently in the neighborhood's geography, and upcoming construction of pipelines from the new reservoir will impact roads within the community.

Tom Lewis has been the chair of Centennial Neighborhood Association for the past four years. He is a member of the Project Advisory Committee (PAC), and says that he feels good about his experience with the public involvement process and how it has informed the development of the new structures planned for the park center. He commends Tim Hall for doing a good job of keeping his association informed.

Tom adds that the 9,000 households in the Centennial Neighborhood association are spread out over a large area, dissected by several north-south and east-west streets and boulevards. The reservoir project's future impact on area roadways is something the association cares a great deal about. Tom says he hopes the Portland Water Bureau and Portland Department of Transportation communicate and coordinate when the time comes to do the roadwork and lay new pipelines. "We'd like to see new sidewalks and better roads."

Learn more about the Centennial Neighborhood Association at http://www.portlandonline.com/oni/index.cfm?c=46703.

CONTACT TIM HALL, CITY OF PORTLAND WATER BUREAU | TimH@ci.portland.or.us | 503.823.6926