Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project

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Environmental Services has begun construction on a project to restore wetlands and natural habitat on about 30 acres in the Johnson Creek floodplain. This project will reduce flood risk for local homes and businesses and enhance habitat for sensitive wildlife.
Design for the project began in Fall 2019. Construction began in the Spring of 2024 and will take about a year and a half to complete.
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Project Area

The project will take place in the wetlands and natural areas along the Springwater Corridor Trail from Beggars Tick Natural Area to Zenger Farm. The project is located on public property between SE 111th and 122nd Avenues, from SE Harold Street and SE Foster Road. 

Map of Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project areas. The map reflects project boundaries of the work zone, in comparison to where the Springwater Corridor Trail, Zenger Farms, and Johnson Creek.wetlands storage and habitat restoration areas

The graphic above is a simplified map that displays wetland improvements and proposed access for the Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project. Please note - this map is not up to scale. 

General Schedule  

Construction began in early-April 2024. This work will take about a year and a half to complete. 

All work is weather-dependent and subject to change due to contractor and subcontractor availability. 

What’s Happening Now?  

Construction continues in North Wetlands and crews will finish site preparation in the Central Wetlands. The City’s contractor will import clean soil and other building materials from the barrow site at the West Lents restoration area.Earth and gravel transported to back to Springwater will used to create embankments, walls and raised structures made of soil and bedrock. Embankments can act as dams, holding water back to prevent flooding. Crews will also build structures to carry and stabilize roadways.

Please be aware that construction work will occur in phases, and replanting work will be completed during the appropriate seasons. 

We want you to be safe around work sites. Please keep children, pets, bikes, cars, and trucks away from the tools, machines, supplies, and construction workers.

Rest of the Week

Daytime work hours are Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. the following location:

  • SE 111th Avenue and SE Harold Street — Crews continue to import clean soil to enhance North Wetlands. Construction trucks and vehicles will transport dirt and materials both on and offsite. City’s contractor has built a wheel-washing system to minimize dust and transporting invasive species. Mowing services may continue into next week to reduce wildfire risk at West Lents.
  • Springwater Trail Corridor, along SE 113th and SE 120th Avenues — Crews to continue installation of semi-permanent fencing, tree protections, and temporary water management system for the Central Wetlands. Work to occur south and east through the Central Wetland and into Zenger North.

Weeks of June 24 and July 1

Daytime work hours are Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. the following locations:

  • SE 111th Avenue and SE Harold Street — Crews continue to import clean soil to enhance North Wetlands. 
  • Springwater Trail Corridor, along SE 113th and SE 120th Avenues — Crews to remove soil that contains petroleum in Central Wetlands. Construction trucks and vehicles will transport dirt and materials both on and offsite. City’s contractor has built a wheel-washing system to minimize dust and transporting invasive species. Environmental Services and its partners will also conduct frog and reptile salvages. A salvage is the safe, effective, and temporary removal of wildlife from work zones to avoid environmental hazards. 

Construction work will not be conducted on July 4 and July 5, due to the observance of the Independence Day holiday. 

This work will temporarily restrict some travel lanes, sidewalk crossings in work zones, remove on-street parking, and may create traffic delays. 

Please obey all traffic control signs and follow the directions of flaggers.

What to Expect During Construction

Construction creates noise, vibration, and dust and can disrupt normal neighborhood activity. We want you to be safe around the work site. Please keep children, pets, bikes, cars, and trucks away from the tools, machines, supplies, and construction workers. A City inspector will be on-site during work hours and may be able to assist you with construction concerns. Inspectors typically wear a hard hat and safety vest with “City of Portland” on the back. 

To learn more about what to expect during construction, please review the brief guide on what community can expect during ongoing projects conducted by Environmental Services.

What You Need to Know

  • Tree Management Tree-cutting, trimming and pruning, removal, and installing protections will be performed throughout project’s duration.
  • A Safe Work Site — We want you to be safe around the work site. Please keep children, pets, bikes, cars, and trucks away from the tools, machines, supplies, and construction workers.
  • Access to Your Home or Business — You will be able to go to your home or business, but you may not be able to park as close as you would like. We will try to make sure driveways and parking lot entrances stay open.
  • Parking Restrictions We want you to be safe, so you might not be able to park your car next to work sites, equipment, or materials. If crews are working directly in front of your home or a business, you may need to park in another place. Additionally, all parked cars and private property located on city property must be removed, or risk lawful towing. 
  • Right-of-Way (ROW) Items in the right-of-way (ROW)may be disturbed by removal services. The following may be impacted:  trees; irrigation systems; hard landscaping (stone, concrete, steel, brick, pavers, garden boxes, edging, retaining walls, or other construction materials); soft landscaping (plants, shrubs, flowers, flower beds, grass, bark, etc.); and any other amenities that belong to you that are in the right‐of‐way. 
  • Traffic DelaysThis work will temporarily restrict some travel lanes and sidewalk crossings in work zones, removal of on-street parking, and may create traffic delays. Please obey all traffic control signs and follow the directions of flaggers.
  • Equipment Storage — Sometimes we will leave tools, machines, and supplies on your street overnight. Please stay away from them.
  • Maintained Service — You can still use sewer, water, and other services while work is being conducted on this project.
  • Schedule Changes and Inactivity — Our work schedules can change for many reasons like weather, traffic, and problems with tools, machines, or supplies. Sometimes we need to stop between different types of work and start again later.

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. The following resources will help you stay informed and report concerns: 

  • Project Webpage: Visit portland.gov/bes/SpringwaterWetlands for project details.
  • Questions: Call 503-823-5759 or email City staff stating that Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project is your area of concern. Outreach staff will return your call or email by the next business day. 
  • Sewer Emergency: In the event of a sewer backup or basement flooding, call the Maintenance hotline immediately at 503-823-1700. It is staffed all hours and all days, 24/7.

Project Background

The Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project will be Environmental Services' third floodplain project east of the I-205 Freeway in the Lents and Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhoods. The Brookside Wetlands Project was built in 1997. The Foster Floodplain Natural Area was completed in 2012. While those projects reduced local flooding and improved the health of Johnson Creek, more work is needed. 

The Project will restore publicly owned property. This project will hold more floodwater on public land to reduce flood risk to local homes and businesses. As part of the project, Environmental Services will update the National Flood Insurance Maps for the Johnson Creek floodplain in this area. 

What will this project do?

  • Reduce how often homes, businesses, and streets flood in the project area.
  • Enhance habitat for sensitive wildlife. 
  • Improve the water quality of Johnson Creek. 

How will this be done?

Environmental Services will make several changes in the wetlands to restore the natural areas and reduce flood risks. The project will: 

  • Add places on public property where flood water can go when Johnson Creek is high.
  • Dispose of soil that contains petroleum.
  • Remove non-native plants and replace them with native plants. 
  • Build trails for access and emergency response.

Sign Up for Project Updates

Sign up for weekly email or text message updates for Springwater Wetlands and Floodplain Restoration Project through our free GovDelivery subscription service. These updates are the best way to stay informed about what’s happening and what to expect. You can also sign up for bulletins on other projects and topics. 
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This project will help protect the health of the Johnson Creek Watershed.

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