St. Helens approves contract for survey of city wetlands
The St. Helens City Council approved a contract Wednesday for a consultant to define where protected wetlands exist on a portion of the city's industrial property, marking a step toward future development on the land.
The City Council approved an $8,500 contract with Wetlands Solutions Northwest LLC during a meeting Wednesday, Dec. 5, by a unanimous vote.
Per terms of the contract, Wetlands Solutions Northwest will survey a portion of the former Boise White Paper site, now city-owned, to determine wetland boundaries.
St. Helens Mayor Rick Scholl, Councilor Keith Locke and City Administrator John Walsh explained that having a clear record of where the wetlands are is the city doing its due diligence before a developer can build on the land.
According to contract documents, a wetlands inventory was last completed in 1998, but the boundary mapping is an approximation and, over time, wetland boundaries can change.
While a statewide inventory of wetlands is available, the city has not completed its own local study of wetlands on that site, Walsh and Locke explained.
In a map provided by the city, several areas are identified that should be included in the study. The city is primarily focusing on an area located on the southern portion of its industrial property, below the city's wastewater treatment plant. Within that zone, the city has identified areas along the southern-most portion of the property, which abuts the railroad tracks running along its perimeter; another wetland just east of an eight-acre portion of land the city recently sold to ACSP LLC; and a strip of land near the Kaster Road and Old Portland Road intersection.
The project is estimated to cost between $8,500 and $10,000, depending on the scope of field work, contract documents show.
The study is expected to be complete by January 2020. If needed, the contract can be extended for up to two years, if approved in one-year increments, the contract also shows.