2017 Stormwater Symposium Kickoff Meeting

dragonwellThe symposium planning kickoff meeting will take place on October 13th at the Dragonwell Bistro, downtown, at 5:30pm. Anyone interested in being a part of the planning for the 2017 Symposium should plan on attending. EWRG will be picking up the tab for the first round of drinks.

September Meeting Announcement

DATE:    Wednesday, September 28th
PLACE:  Hawthorne Lucky Lab Brew Pub, 915 SE Hawthorne Blvd
TIME:     11:30 a.m. Networking, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Presentation
SPEAKER:  Erik Bakkom, Maul Foster & Alongi
TOPIC: Zidell Waterfront Cleanup


zidellFormer ship breaking and salvage operations at the Zidell facility, located 3 miles upstream of the Portland Harbor Superfund site in the Willamette River, had impacted the upland and aquatic environment with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), tributyltin (TBT), metals, and asbestos on this half-mile stretch of river. The remedy selected by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) required soil and sediment caps to isolate contaminants, riprap armoring to resist river erosion, and bank grading to address slope stability. Following the Record of Decision for the site, an iterative design process was begun with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to develop the sediment and bank line cap design. The project manager encouraged the design group to develop concepts that would reduce ecological impacts associated with the remedy and its implementation, improving the chances of success during the Endangered Species Act consultation for listed fish (salmon and steelhead). During the design process, the team evaluated contaminant distribution, contaminant isolation, bathymetry, fluvial dynamics, bank stability, armoring against erosion, site operational considerations (vessel launching), hydraulics (impacts to flood elevation), ecological impacts, and infrastructure (e.g., municipal stormwater discharges, existing and proposed bridges). Investigation of these elements provided the design team a higher level of understanding of the site needs, resulting in a significantly modified and more complex remedy concept that integrated the bank and sediment cap components. In three construction phases the remedy was implemented to remove hot spot soils, to stabilize more than a half-mile of river bank and cap 12-acres of sediments, and then cap 30-acres of upland soils. The design team coordinated extensively with the City of Portland during the abandonment of a former city outfall and with TriMet for the construction of the Tilikum Crossing Bridge. The project was recognized in 2014 with ASCE/COPRI’s Project Excellence Award in the large project category. Erik will review the process of developing the complex remedial design for upland and sediment and how several significant challenges were turned into significant opportunities.


Erik Bakkom is a senior engineer at Maul Foster & Alongi, Inc. He has 17 years of experience in environmental engineering, focusing on brownfield/industrial site cleanup, sediment remediation, and solid waste planning and design. Erik has worked as part of various teams to bioremediate a large solvent plume adjacent to the Willamette River, to cap and redevelop the Astoria landfill to a high school sports complex, and construction of a mine waste repository in Idaho’s Silver Valley to address cleanup of the Couer d’Alene River. Erik began design work on the Zidell Waterfront Property cleanup in 2006 and has overseen construction between 2010 and 2016.

2016 Boat Tour

boat-tour-mapThe 2016 Boat Tour was a huge success!

We learned about local Willamette River ecological and water related issues and concerns, as well as mingled and conversed with a diverse group of environmentally minded individuals. We were reminded that we’re all working towards the same goal: protecting and preserving our natural water resources. Speakers included:

Oaks Bottom Habitat – Sean Bistoff, BES
Kellogg Dam Removal – Mark Gamba, City of Milwaukie
Big Pipe project – Arnel Mandilag, BES
Eastbank Crescent – Debbie Bischoff, City of Portland
Portland Harbor Superfund – Kevin Parrett, DEQ
Tilikum Crossing – Calvin Lee, Trimet

June Meeting Annoucement

DATE:    Wednesday, June 29th
PLACE:  Hawthorne Lucky Lab Brew Pub, 915 SE Hawthorne Blvd
TIME:     11:30 a.m. Networking, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Presentation
SPEAKER:  Nikki Guillot, City of Vancouver
TOPIC: International BMP Database


The International BMP Database was created in 19BMP Database96 as a partnership of several professional engineering groups looking for a way to collect and display emerging data on the effectiveness of various stormwater treatment facilities. Since its inception, over 530 studies have been contributed from over 400 sites in several countries. Updates to the web interface, partnerships with research institutions including the National Stormwater Quality Database have contributed to a wealth of information available to a broad audience.

What does this data look like? Where is it coming from and who is checking it? Context is important and with analysis tools built into the web interface, it can be tempting to draw conclusions about broad categories of stormwater facilities. It’s important to take a look at the source of the data, to consider the limitations of the information and approach addressing policy decisions or design approaches based on the available information in the database carefully.


Nikki Guillot is an Engineering Specialist with the City of Vancouver’s Surface Water program. She has spent over a decade working in the stormwater management field from agricultural drainage and water quality impairments in the Midwest to municipal permit compliance in Kansas and Washington. She has contributed to stormwater design manuals and has been a construction inspector and a project manager. Nikki spent a couple of years on the headquarters staff at the American Public Works Association and was a lead on the International BMP Database committee. She has an Environmental Science degree from Drake University and is a Certified Stormwater Manager (CSM) with APWA.