We have a “New” Portland Harbor CAG YouTube page. “Subscribe here” and at the bottom of the email. Now you have access to our monthly virtual meetings, forums, and presentations.

CAG Board Members

Michael Pouncil, Chair

Doug Larson

Sarah Taylor


Scott Burr, Tech Advisor

Caleb Shaffer, EPA Superfund Project Manager

Annie Kilburg Smith, Triangle Associates, Host

Laura Knudson, EPA

Laura Feldman, Willamette River Advisory Group

Sarah Greenfield, DEQ


Number of Participants: 24


Michael Pouncil

Introductions. Welcome and thanks for joining us tonight.


Caleb Shaffer

Interested in becoming a Collaborative Member? Please send an e-mail to phcollaborative@triangleassociates.com

Call Triangle Associates at 503-891-3262 if you have any questions as we continue the transition to the Collaborative Group.


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Frog Ferry
Susan Bladholm- Founder/President, 503.319.2164

James Paulson, Frog Ferry Project Manager and outreach coordinator

The Frog Ferry is a nonprofit organization formed around the need to bring an integrated and holistic approach to how we move people and cargo around the region with a common-sensical approach to problem solving. Now that demand for alternative means of commuting to downtown Portland is at an all-time high, let’s put our collective wisdom to work in a public-private partnership for the betterment of municipalities, commuters, and downtown employers.

Susan Bladholm: Has over 30 years experience in Oregon with transportation infrastructure related to cycling. Also worked with Port of Portland and with a helicopter company that specializes in emergency response. Friends of Frog Ferry, a non-profit. PBOT is supportive and is willing to partner with the Friends of Frog Ferry. Met with local public transit agencies, plans and research findings are on their website.

Goals: 1) Raise money for and conduct a feasibility study and a finance plan. The plan was found to be feasible; 2) Secure a public agency sponsor for funding toward a passenger ferry fund, the pot of money has grown with Commissioner Hardesty as sponsor; 3) Build a pilot project.

We have 200 active volunteers with $6 million in donations from the private sector.

We plan to start operating in 2024.

This will be a public passenger ferry service, accessible to everyone with a target audience of commuters. This system will not take autos, just foot passengers and bicycles. The FROG artwork (lithograph) was designed by the leader of the Chinook Nation. We are looking to weave in artwork from local tribes.

FTA (Federal Transportation Agency) grant will match 80% to 20% local donations.

The pilot project: a 70-passenger vessel from Cathedral Park to OHSU, using a diesel engine. Our intention for the future is to have a fully electrified fleet. We’re looking into the possibility of a shuttle to the Cathedral Park dock. Our intention is to mitigate autos on the road and minimize impacts to the river.

Financial Projections for Full Project:

Capital costs: $40 million

Operating costs: $6.8 million

Ticket revenue: $3 million

Subsidy: $2.5 million

Ticket price $5 ($3 for honored passengers – low income, seniors, children).

Cost Estimate for first two years, pilot project: $8 million


Q&A for Susan Bladholm

Q: Happy to hear about electrification goal. Might make sense to make pickup areas interchangeable with mass transit light rail.

A: No easy answer – each stop is different. Cathedral Park is underserved by public transportation. Frog is looking into each location’s needs.

Q: Consider a stop at swan island?

A: Would love to have a stop there but the request was denied because it’s in a superfund site. Down the road that might happen. Looking at what’s most strategic and best for the public.

Q: How many vessels, at the peak of service, on the river at one time?

A: Goal will be to eventually have seven ferries. Three 100-person ferries and four 70-person ferries. Some stops will be every half-hour, others will be every hour.

Q: We’d love to be able to ride the ferry downtown at night. Will it run late enough at night?

A: Yes, that’s the ultimate plan. For the pilot project, a reduced schedule might be 5am – 7pm. Long term we would like to run later.

Q: Integrating native culture?

A: One board member is already communicating with tribes and has an offer to write a narrative from the perspective of indigenous people. Education on the ferry.

Q; Bicycles – how to safely contain bikes on the ferry.

A: Yes, working on this.

Q: From the perspective of the CAG – trying to increase awareness of superfund activities on the river – this will help to create that awareness, involving the public.

A: Yes. Will this will help improve our community in so many ways. Consider sending a letter of support – email to Susan (email address above).


Braided River Campaign
Sarah Taylor

Mamelang Memela, memelamamelang@gmail.com,

Elijah Cetas, er.cetas@gmail.com
The Braided River Campaign (BRC) is a collaborative of passionate individuals, community leaders, and local organizations who seek to engage the city in a conversation about the future use of the Guild’s Lake Industrial Sanctuary by asserting our right to a transparent, community driven process. BRC seeks to create a community led land use plan for the lower Willamette River that includes the basic guiding principles of equity, climate justice, environmental stewardship and safe jobs.

Elijah Cetas: Fuel trains in Linnton sit next to a community center. Organizing for a paradigm shift in the future of Portland Harbor. Conversations about environmental injustices along the river. What kind of a portal do we want to be walking through? Start to plan for changes on the river, working with numerous organizations. Habitat restoration, river access, retrofitting and deconstruction of fossil fuel tanks, protections for small businesses, worker services, full superfund cleanup with community benefits, safe jobs, clean energy-manufacturing and trade.

Advocating that the community plan take part in development decisions. The fossil fuel industry opposes this.

Mamelang Memela: Acknowledgement of tribal history along the River. Showed a satellite image of Portland harbor. Information about the region and the storage tanks along the river that contain fuel, described as a hotbed of hazards. Extreme danger in the event of an earthquake, will also cause a wildfire in Forest Park. Over 500 tanks on this part of the river, 300 are in use. Many have not be updated in many decades. The risk of flooding increases with climate change. Given the risks, how do we provide for the coming years? Which industries should remain along the river?

Sarah Taylor: The name, Braided River, was chosen because the Willamette River was indeed, braided. Showed artist rendering of the river years ago. Before settlers, the river was a rich floodplain, wildlife, fish, plant communities which all provided food and medicine. Forest Park is one of the largest urban parks in the US, a narrow piece of land along the river. The river was created by earthquakes, volcanoes and floods. The project is also working to take photographic portraits of people along the river.


Q&A for Mamelang Memela, Sarah Taylor and Elijah Cetas

Q: What catalyst motivated you to tackle land uses as a way to galvanize interest?

A: Attending meetings with EPA, DEQ, people brought in health concerns and the Braided River Project is a chance for people working on these issues to come together to work on a plan. So, we studied and learned about the State Land Use Planning Project.

Q: What is your biggest roadblock to getting fuel tanks retrofitted?

A: Public agencies, particularly City and State, need to take ownership and plan for retrofitting. City and State are currently unwilling to take it to the next step. It’s such a big problem, they don’t know where to start. Your neighborhood has a comprehensive plan. We’re trying to get in on the ground floor to set values for the comprehensive plan, which will impact people for the next 20 years. Communities haven’t had enough access to this planning in order to make a difference. When you drive through Portland, what you see is the comprehensive planning process.


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Upcoming events for EARTH WEEK

SATURDAY, APRIL 17, 2021 AT 4:30 PM PDT – 7 PM PDT
Cathedral Park Beach Cleanup
Location: Cathedral Park, Portland

Join the Human Access Project (HAP) for an early action Earth Day clean up at Cathedral Park beach.
Facebook Event Page
Learn more about HAP here

Tuesday, April 20, 2021 AT 10:00AM – 12:00PM

Earth Week Climate Resilience Green Working Waterfront
Join the Braided River Campaign on Earth Week for a press conference announcing a Grass Roots Vision for a Climate Resilience Green Working Waterfront and the Portland Harbor. There will as be a donation drive for Seafarers who work on ships in the Portland Harbor.
There are 2 coalition meetings on Monday, April 12th at 6PM, and another on Friday, April 16 at 12PM over Zoom to come together and begin a platform for the Earth Week press conference (these are repeating meetings so please just come to one)
* 4/12 Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85359470589?pwd=aGxpZ3B0eTRFSm4vSENqYUVHUVgwUT09
* 4/16 Zoom:


****News On The River****

DEQ’s Record Of Decision (ROD) for the Willamette Cove Upland Site has been issued, click here to read/review.
This is a pivotal moment for Willamette Cove to get the desires of community for the safest cleanup of toxic pollutants in the upland site.

Areas of interest in the document:
Introduction and Scope- pg. 1-3
*Responsive summary- pg. 59-63
Description of the selected soil remediation action- pg. 64
*Contingency remedy and institutional controls- pg. 67
Residual risk assessment- pg. 68


Metro Parks Bond – Monday, April 26, 4:30pm. Zoom evite

Metro Parks and Nature Bond Event

Hosts: Shirley Craddick, Christine Lewis, and Bob Stacey



Northwest Toxic Communities Coalition annual virtual Summit is Free.

It’s on April 24, Saturday, 9am-5pm. There will be 4 main speakers and will be live Q&A.

See https://nwtoxiccommunities.org/calendar/nwtcc-2021-summit-april-24/

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And we persevere, persist, continue,
carry-on, going to keep-on, not give up, struggle-on, hammer away,
be persistent, be determined, press-on ahead.


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Michael Pouncil

Closing: Thanks to all presenters and participants.



Contact: Michael Pouncil at 503.705.7224, mpouncil@comcast.net

Portland Harbor CAG
Portland Harbor CAG YouTube

Notes taken by Jane Terzis