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Chapin Park play area has been completely surrounded by an approximately 52-inch plastic fence

It's not just Clackamette Park that has been affected by the heavy rains, but also on higher ground in Oregon City, Chapin Park has for many years suffered flooding due to poor drainage.

PHOTOS COURTESY: TYSON CAMPBELL - At Chapin Park, Paige, 7, and Nora, 3, are towed by mom Erin Campbell. After another year of high water at the 18-acre park on Warner Parrott Road, newly elected Oregon City Commissioner Frank O'Donnell was successful in advocating that the city install temporary safety fencing around the flooded playground area around Chapin Park's play structure.

O'Donnell heard about the flooding at a South End Neighborhood Association meeting on March 16 and sent an email to the city at about noon on March 17. By 3:15 p.m. on March 17, the play area has been completely surrounded by an approximately 52-inch plastic fence.

"I recognize this is a short-term response, but it is designed to avert a potential tragedy," O'Donnell said.

Oregon City has already solicited bids to install additional drainage in this area.

Oregon City Community Services Director Director Phil Lewis said parks staff have been working with a local firm to determine general scope and approximate cost of a permanent fix for the drainage issues at Chapin Park playground. With the information that the fix could be completed for less than $150,000, the city is in the process of soliciting quotes using an "intermediate procurement process" as stipulated by state law. The law states that the city should try to seek "at least three informally solicited competitive price quotes" or competitive proposals from contractors.

PHOTOS COURTESY: TYSON CAMPBELL - Chapin Park's playground in Oregon City was underwater in February, so the Campbell kids went playground rafting. "Work in the area is weather-dependent, so the timeline may shift, but we anticipate having a contractor selected within the next month and work completed sometime before late spring," Lewis said.

Meanwhile, Clackamette Park's RV park closes nearly every year during the high water-season. Located at the confluence of the Willamette and Clackamas rivers, the park is partially closed due to high waters that are not considered to be at flood stage.

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