SE Stark Trunk Sewer Project

Sewer and Stormwater
Environmental Services is constructing a project to repair a large-diameter sewer pipe that runs along SE Stark Street between SE 6th Avenue and the Willamette River. The pipe known as the "Stark Trunk" is over 110 years old and is in need of repair to prevent sewer and stormwater overflows.
Construction will begin the week of July 15, 2024, and take up to six months to complete.
On this Page

The Stark Trunk is a large sewer pipe that is showing signs of deterioration and needs to be repaired. These repairs will extend the service life of the trunk by 60 years or more, increase sewer resiliency to earthquake damage, and help protect public health and the community by preventing sewage releases to buildings and streets. 

Project Area 

This project includes two phases. A stormwater diversion structure on SE 3rd Avenue between SE Stark Street and SE Washington Street is complete. Sewer pipe repair on SE Stark Street from SE Water Avenue to SE 6th Avenue will occur in summer 2024.

Stark Trunk Work Locations by Phase

General Schedule

The project will be completed in two phases.

Phase 1: Stormwater Diversion Structure - Complete

Phase one constructed a stormwater diversion structure on SE 3rd Avenue between SE Washington Street and SE Stark Street. 

Phase 2: Pipe Work - July 2024 to January 2025

Phase two will repair the sewer pipe on SE Stark Street between SE 6th Avenue and the Willamette River. Phase two will take up to six months to complete. See project area map for location of the pipe work.

What’s Happening Now

Night work and road closures will begin next week. All work is weather dependent, and the schedule below is subject to change.

Week of July 15

  • SE Stark Street and SE 2nd Avenue – Crews will prepare the area during the day by setting up traffic cones, digging a large pit, and removing the old pipe. Crews will then reconstruct the sewer mainline during approved night hours (6 p.m. - 7 a.m.) using a trenchless method called Jack and Bore. This work will take up to five weeks to complete.
  • Please note: During night work only, the road will be closed at the intersection of SE Stark Street and SE 2nd Avenue, and travelers will be detoured onto SE Washington Street, SE Oak Street, or SE 3rd Avenue. Flaggers will be in the area to direct traffic and will maintain access to businesses in the area. Watch for detour signage and expect some traffic delays.

Week of July 22

  • SE Stark Street and SE 2nd Avenue – Crews will continue to reconstruct the sewer mainline during approved night hours (6 p.m. - 7 a.m.) using a trenchless method called Jack and Bore.

Night Work

In order to reduce impacts to residents, businesses, and the traveling public, Environmental Services has been granted a noise variance to work day and night to complete the project as fast as possible. Working at night will reduce the overall duration of the project and ensure work that requires dry weather can be completed this summer when flows in the Stark Trunk are low.

Allowable work hours are Monday through Saturday from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m. the following day. However, preparation for the work may occur outside of this time. 

Noise Reduction Measures

Louder activities will be completed during the day. Equipment that will be used at night includes trucks, water jet truck, front-end loaders, generators, air compressors, pumps, hose reel, hydraulic power pack, spool skate, and lights. Crews will use a variety of techniques to help reduce noise and disruption:

  • Sound barriers will be used to reduce noise levels, if necessary
  • “Smart alarm” back up beepers instead of a standard reverse alarm will be used from 6pm until 10pm for all equipment activity. Backup alarms will be disconnected between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. and spotters will be used to safely back up vehicles
  • Generators or other stationary equipment will be placed away from residential neighbors when possible

If you have a concern during night work hours, you can call the Environmental Services noise hotline at 503-823-1338. You can also contact the Portland Noise Program at 503-823-7350 or, or complete their online noise complaint form

Construction Methods

The City’s contractor will use several construction methods to repair the sewer pipe. Some areas will require digging access pits to install the pipe.  

Construction methods may include the following:  

  • Jack and Bore and Spiral Wound Pipe Lining are mostly trenchless and require less digging and often less time to complete than other sewer repair methods.  
  • Open Trench Excavation to dig small trenches to replace short sections of broken pipe before repairing the entire mainline sewer pipe, and to construct sewer service laterals and access pits. 

What to Expect During Construction

You can expect the following activities and impacts during construction:

Businesses Open During Construction
  • Noise, Vibration, and Dust: Construction creates noise, vibration, and dust and disrupts normal neighborhood activity.
  • Equipment Storage: Equipment and materials may be stored on streets overnight.
  • No Parking: Little or no on‐street parking will be allowed in and near work zones, especially during work hours. On days when crews will be working in front of your house or nearby, please plan ahead. If you park your vehicle on the street, plan to move it off the street by 7 a.m. and return it at 6 p.m.
  • Traffic Delays: Expect traffic delays in and near the work area.
  • Lane Restrictions and Street Closures: It is too soon to know exactly what traffic controls will be necessary to set up a safe work zone and construct the sewer improvements. The contractor will develop detailed traffic control plans before construction begins at a location.
  • Pedestrian Access: If temporary crosswalk and sidewalk closures are necessary, signage will indicate the alternate way for pedestrians to proceed. 
  • Business Access: Sidewalks and entrances to parking lots will be maintained. 
  • Services Maintained: Sewer, water, and other utilities are expected to remain in service during construction.
  • Work Hours—Work hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Sometimes we work on Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. When weather forecasts predict high temperatures, crews will begin at 6:00 a.m. 

We Want to Hear from You

Environmental Services will inform residents and businesses about project activities and respond to questions and concerns in a timely manner. We encourage you to:

  • Visit this project webpage regularly for updates.
  • With questions or comments, please contact Matt Gough by email or phone 503-823-5352.
  • If you have a question or concern, please be sure to include your name, property address, and project name (Stark Trunk) in your voicemail and email so we can provide you more details about what to expect in front of your property.
  • If your basement sewer backs up or your property or street floods, please report it immediately to the City’s Maintenance Operations hotline at 503-823-1700. It is staffed 24/7, all hours and all days.

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This project will help protect the health of the Williamette River Watershed.