Summary Information
(last updated on: 3/30/2021 4:15:45 PM)
DEQ has selected a cleanup plan documented in the Record of Decision (ROD) to address soil contamination on the “Upland” portion of the Willamette Cove Site. In 2020, DEQ held a six-month public comment period on the recommended cleanup for the Willamette Cove Upland, which was presented in DEQ’s Staff Report. DEQ received nearly 200 public comments. A responsive summary is provided in Section 9 of the ROD and the comments are provided in Appendix B.

Helpful information for Willamette Cove can be found below, including the an updated factsheet and ROD presenting the selected cleanup and basis. Please also visit DEQ’s Willamette Cove Uplands webpage for additional information, including a Story Map on the Upland Cleanup at

The vacant 27-acre riverfront property stretches approximately 3,000 feet on the northeast bank of the Willamette River, positioned between river mile 6 and 7 of the Willamette River, north (downriver) of downtown Portland and south (upriver) of the St. Johns Bridge. The Willamette Cove property has a history of development and use spanning over 100 years, and used extensively for industrial activity from the early 1900s to 1970s, including a cooperage, lumber mill, and dry dock activities. Significant over-water activity also occurred.

Metro, a tri-county governmental agency, currently owns the property. The Port of Portland is a former owner/operator of a portion of the property. Extensive environmental investigation has been completed at the site including surface and subsurface soil, groundwater, and sediment in adjoining river sediment. Contaminants including dioxins, PCBs, metals, and petroleum hydrocarbons have been detected, most notably in upland soil and river sediment. In addition to remedial investigation work, both human and ecological risk assessments have been completed and a feasibility study begun in 2014 to identify cleanup activities for the upland site that would eliminate risk to human health or the environment.

A plan for removal of highly-concentrated contaminated soil in the upland property was approved by DEQ, and subsequently implemented in 2015-2016. Removal focused on elevated dioxins, also called “hotspots” but included soils contaminated with metals and PCBs. An updated upland feasibility study and source control evaluation was submitted to DEQ in October 2017 to address the remaining contamination in the uplands, which pose risk to human health and the environment.

At this time, environmental work in the site upland is being overseen by DEQ under the Northwest Region Cleanup Program located in Portland. Actions to address in-water contamination (Willamette River and riverbank) are being overseen by EPA Region 10 (Seattle) in accordance with the January 2017 Record of Decision for the Portland Harbor Superfund Site. Both DEQ and the Oregon Health Authority have advised persons to not enter the site for recreational or other purposes given the presence of soil and sediment (river) contamination.

A Revised Upland Feasibility Study and Source Control Evaluation was submitted to DEQ in March 2019, and has been reviewed by DEQ, EPA, and Tribes. As noted above, DEQ has selected a cleanup plan to address extensive soil contamination in the Upland portion of the site. The groundwater source control evaluation is ongoing. A supplemental groundwater source control evaluation and alternatives analysis was submitted in June 2019 and a revised report in January 2020. Porewater sampling results are expected soon (before May 2021) to support the groundwater source control evaluation.
General Site Information
Site: Willamette Cove (ECSI Site ID: 2066) CERCLIS (EPA) Id
Project Manager: Erin McDonnell Investigative Status:Listed on the Confirmed Release List or Inventory
PM Phone: (503) 229-6900 NPL(National Priority Listing):No
Address: Foot of N Edgewater St. Is this site an Orphan?No
Portland, 97203 Is this site a brownfield?No
County: MULTNOMAH Action Underway or Needed: RECORD OF DECISION
Region: Northwest Region Click for more details ...  
NOTE: This site has one or more long-term controls designed to manage site risks. Click here for details.

Site Documents
Click the link to view the document.
File NameCategory File Size MB Document Date Upload Date
Upland FS and SCE Comments January 24 2017.pdf Correspondence 0.4196 1/24/2018 1/24/2018
EPA Comments on 2017 FS and SCE.pdf Correspondence 0.0577 1/24/2018 1/24/2018
Metro Comments on 2017 FS and SCE.pdf Correspondence 0.9745 1/24/2018 1/24/2018
Willamette Cove Upland_Executive Summary_March2020.pdf Fact Sheets 0.3582 2/28/2020 2/28/2020
Willamette Cove_Factsheet_March2021.pdf Fact Sheets 0.7144 3/31/2021 3/31/2021
DEQ Response to WP Mods. Will. Cove 0508.pdf Miscellaneous 0.1567 6/5/2008
DEQ Approval Will Cove WP Addendum 0608.pdf Miscellaneous 0.0772 6/10/2008
Willamette Cove_Comments on GW SCE-AA_081919.pdf Miscellaneous 0.5432 8/18/2019 2/22/2020
2000 RI and SC Agreement.pdf Orders/Consent Judgments 2.2879 11/3/2000 1/5/2018
Willamette Cove Health Consultation (OHA - April 13).pdf Reports 2.8369 4/15/2013
Willamette Cove Feasibility Study (October 2014) - text and tbls.pdf Reports 2.5415 10/14/2014 4/3/2015
Anadromous fisheries near McCormick-Baxter Portland (NOAA, 1992).pdf Reports 0.4936 6/2/1992 6/16/2016
Willamette Cove Combined FS and SCE.pdf Reports 11.5536 9/18/2017 10/31/2017
1056-02 WC 2010 Sampling Letter.pdf Reports 4.7187 5/6/2011 12/26/2017
Willamette Cove Removal Action Completion Report_Part1.pdf Reports 10.4814 5/27/2016 5/16/2018
Willamette Cove Removal Action Completion Report_Part2.pdf Reports 10.3175 5/27/2016 5/16/2018
Willamette Cove Removal Action Completion Report_Part3.pdf Reports 7.3235 5/27/2016 5/16/2018
OHA Beach Health Assessment - 2013.pdf Reports 5.4738 4/11/2013 10/31/2018
Revised Feasibility Study Main Report.pdf Reports 8.2997 3/7/2019 3/12/2019
Revised Feasibility Study Appendices A to D.pdf Reports 21.1662 3/7/2019 3/12/2019
Revised Feasibility Study Appendices E to G.pdf Reports 15.5233 3/7/2019 3/12/2019
Willamette Cove_DRAFT Groundwater SCE (Text)_062119.pdf Reports 0.9332 6/21/2019 12/3/2019
Willamette Cove_Response to Comments on FS and SCE - June 2019.pdf Reports 2.6403 6/24/2019 12/9/2019
Willamette Cove_Revised Groundwater SCE_AA_January2020.pdf Reports 12.0832 1/20/2020 2/22/2020
Willamette Cove_Site History Report - Appendices C Historical Aerials_110800.pdf Reports 7.5654 11/8/2000 7/29/2021
Willamette Cove Upland_DEQ Staff Report on Recommended Cleanup_March2020.pdf RODs/Staff Reports 9.9350 3/1/2020 3/30/2021
Willamette Cove Upland_DEQ ROD- Section 9 Responsive Summary _March2021.pdf RODs/Staff Reports 0.1735 3/30/2021 3/30/2021
Willamette Cove Upland_DEQ ROD on Selected Cleanup_March2021.pdf RODs/Staff Reports 9.8275 3/30/2021 3/30/2021
Areal Photo - Site Layout.pdf Site Diagrams 0.8218 2/20/2015 2/20/2015
Historical Aerial Photo - 1939.pdf Site Diagrams 2.5698 2/20/2015 2/20/2015
Historical Photo - 1920 Central Parcel.pdf Site Diagrams 0.5884 4/1/2020 4/14/2020
Willamette Cove strategy recommendation (Jul. 97 draft).pdf Strategy Recommendations 0.0462 7/24/1997 3/24/2016
willamette cove - removal action work plan.pdf Work Plans 3.1466 6/4/2008
FINAL POP W-Cove Work Plan Addendum.pdf Work Plans 3.1731 6/5/2008
1056-05 Revised Willamette Cove RA Eng Design Report.pdf Work Plans 3.5725 2/27/2015 3/6/2015
1056-05 Revised Willamette Cove RD-RA Specs and Drawings.pdf Work Plans 6.6564 2/27/2015 3/6/2015
Upland Removal - Final Design Report May 2015.pdf Work Plans 3.3040 5/18/2015 5/19/2015
Upland Removal - Contractor Specifications March 2015.pdf Work Plans 4.1280 3/31/2015 5/19/2015

Click on the Photograph to see a larger version.

Willamette Cove - Past
Willamette Cove - Present
Historical Photo
2010 Photo
Recent Photo
Recent Photo
    This website application cannot be made compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. We apologize for any inconvenience and invite you to contact DEQ at 800-452-4011 or email for assistance in accessing this site
Department of Environmental Quality
700 NE Multnomah Street, Suite 600 Portland, OR 97232
Hours: Mon-Fri, 8 a.m.-5 p.m

Email: | Phone: 503-229-5696 | Fax: 503-229-6124

Website Feedback  Accessibility  Privacy Policy