GreenWorks has hired by Clean Water Services on a multi-disciplinary team lead by HDR to restore a segment of Fanno Creek and improve the Fanno Creek Trail in downtown Tigard. GreenWorks’ role on the project is to provide trail design for a quarter mile segment of the 15-mile regional trail that extends from Tualatin to Portland through Tigard. The creek enhancements include restoring a previously straightened portion of the creek to a natural, meandering alignment that will improve hydrologic function of the creek and adjacent floodplain. The Fanno Creek Trail improvements will mimic the new creek alignment to draw pedestrians and bikers further into the park to experience the natural environment. The project also includes replacing an old bridge that will be elevated to improve stream hydrology and maximize trail function for bikers using the Fanno Creek Trail.
Gateway Green is a 25-acre site located in East Portland at the confluence of two major freeways. This previously unused remnant landscape has a host of complicated public access challenges making the prospect of creating a park seemingly impossible. Community leaders and advocates who saw a potential for reclaiming this forgotten landscape have been instrumental in framing a vision and rallying support for developing the site into a usable park space.
Because of the challenges Gateway Green presented—its size, unique terrain, close proximity to light rail, and lack of adequate access for pedestrians—off-road cycling was identified as one of the many viable, long-term uses envisioned for the site. In 2017, temporary off-road bike trails were constructed as a means to activate the site and deter homeless camping. The immediate success of the bike facilities has brought local and national recognition to the project, which in turn has given the City of Portland and the project partners motivation and support to push forward with refining the long-term vision to include other uses.
A plan has recently been developed to guide future work to restore habitat, improve access, and enhance other recreational activities. The crux of the design challenge has been to create a plan that balances active and passive uses along with innovative urban habitat restoration.
Robust support for developing the site has been led by the highly visible and active group, Friends of Gateway Green (FoGG). Since 2008, FoGG has envisioned Gateway Green as a place that could provide a much-needed site for off-road cycling, and other outdoor recreation in East Portland. FoGG’s advocacy and partnership building has made the project become a reality.
Reed’s Crossing is a 463 acre mixed-use community in Hillsboro that includes over 4,000 new homes of various type. The Reed’s Crossing project will implement a natural area utilized for stormwater management and public open space for the community. The 20-acre natural area will encompass a variety of ecotones including oak savanna prairie, grass prairie, and wet meadow. GreenWorks provided conceptual design services for park and open space development including planting plans, tree preservation and park diagrams, and an extensive bike and pedestrian trail design. GreenWorks continues to work with Newland Communities by furthering conceptual designs and planting plans, developing grading plans for each concept, estimating potential costs, and strategizing on phasing and maintenance for the project.
The City of Coos Bay received federal funding to install bike lanes, landscape strips, and sidewalks to Empire Boulevard between Newmark Avenue and Wisconsin Avenue to provide alternative transportation opportunities along this heavily traveled corridor.
Improvements include widening the existing two-lane road to make room for on-street parking and bike lanes, installing curb, gutter, landscape strips with street trees, and sidewalk on both sides of the road. Stormwater / water quality facilities are constructed to manage stormwater on-site, converting Empire Boulevard into a ‘green street’. Other project elements include interpretive overlooks with site furniture, illumination, signing, striping, and numerous driveway connections.
With the completion of the Big Pipe in 2011, water quality in the Willamette has improved by leaps and bounds. In the wake of this achievement, Will Levenson, head of the non-profit Human Access Project, is leading an effort to change people’s perceptions of the river and encourage recreation in the water and along the waterfront.
GreenWorks became involved in the Human Access Project in November 2012, bringing our extensive experience designing places for people within sensitive natural environments, which focus on balancing access with habitat conservation.
This balance is certainly a key consideration as the Human Access Project gains momentum through additional community outreach and scaled interventions along the Willamette’s shores. Greenworks is honored to be contributing to this worthy cause and looks forward to witnessing the transformation of Portland’s largest public open space in the years to come.