Even as Metro moves to open new destinations, work is underway to upgrade the parks and facilities that 1.6 million visitors a year already enjoy. Park improvement projects are aimed at upgrading aging facilities, improving sustainability features, and enhancing safety and security.
More than 30 of the projects proposed to be completed with money from the 2013 levy have already been completed, with a handful of projects slated to be completed in the fifth and final year of the levy.
In addition to larger projects, dozens of smaller projects completed in the past year provide better visitor experiences and boost operations and efficiency. Parking lots were striped at Chinook Landing Marine Park and Glendoveer Golf and Tennis Club. Speed bumps, thermoplastic signs and a security camera were installed at Oxbow Regional Park to increase public safety and protect natural resources. Upgrades to the popular splash pad at Blue Lake Regional Park allow water to be recirculated through treatment rather than going directly into the sewer.
New dock, campground road provide better experiences for visitors to Metro destinations
Thanks to voter investments, Metro completed several projects in the fourth year of the five-year that will provide better visitor experiences and boost environmental protections.
At popular Oxbow Regional Park east of Gresham, a new 1,000-foot road was built in the campground and 20 new campsites were prepped. In fall 2017, fire rings and other amenities will be installed at the 20 campsites as well as a vault restroom along the new road. The road also eases congestion at the boat ramp that provides access to the Sandy River, a popular floating destination.
On the northwest side of the region, new aluminum docks with fiberglass decking were installed at Sauvie Island Boat Ramp, which provides access to Multnomah Channel. The new dock replaces the heavily used dock that was about 20 years old.
The replacement project leveraged $107,000 in grant money from the Oregon State Marine Board. Metro contributed $43,000 from the 2013 levy.
At Blue Lake Regional Park in Fairview, improvements to the Curry Yard operations area boost environmental protections, safety and efficiency of regional parks operations. A capture and containment system was installed underneath an above-ground fuel tank so that any diesel or gasoline that spills will be safely captured before reaching the groundwater. The system protects the aquifer under the park that provides drinking water to the region.
In the same area, 9,200 square feet of impervious road, parking and working surfaces were removed. They were replaced with new surfaces and features that capture stormwater runoff from more than 47,000 square feet around the Curry Yard. The improvements allow stormwater to be filtered and cleaned by underground infiltration basins before the water is absorbed into the soil below the park.