Between July and November 2018, The Bureau of Environmental Services, in partnership with Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, replaced a culvert connecting the Willamette River with Oaks Bottom to restore the salmon habitat at Oaks Bottom. The existing culvert was too small for salmon to pass and blocked water flow. The new culvert is bigger and allows salmon to access the wildlife refuge to eat and rest as they migrate between the ocean and their breeding grounds. Since the culvert passed under the Springwater Corridor trail and railroad tracks, the Springwater Corridor trail and railroad tracks were closed during the 4-month construction period.
In addition to replacing the culvert, the Oaks Bottom Enhancement Project improved the stream flow within the refuge, excavated 2,000 linear feet of new channels where young fish could rest and find food, removed invasive vegetation, added 8,500 native plants, trees and shrubs, and installed a viewing platform overlooking the refuge. While the project’s focus was to restore the salmon habitat, the Oaks Bottom Enhancement Project benefits all wildlife at Oaks Bottom. Embed at bottom Slideshow of the Oaks Bottom Enhancement Project: https://www.flickr.com/photos/besportland/30496896047/in/album-72157668567937697/lightbox/