Appeal tribune. (Silverton, Or.) 1999-current, August 22, 2018, Page 3A, Image 3

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Continued from Page 1A
study, said Mt. Angel Public Works Supt. Dan Bernt.
Located on the western slope of the hill, the
“house” is actually large facility with 26 rooms, a
kitchen and a chapel designed for Catholic seminary
students and the priests that teach them.
When the house was built 13 years ago, contractors
disconnected and built over a 50-year-old overflow
pipe connecting the water storage reservoirs above to
a roadside ditch along Humpert Lane below, Bernt
said. So, when a technical glitch caused one of the
city’s wells to keep pumping water into the reservoir
until it overflowed, water infiltrated the house instead
of running around it.
“What was left was an open swale, which, over a
number of years, became almost non-existent,” he
said. “So that last overflow did some damage.”
When the telemetry failed again this summer, no
damage occurred, but the Carmelites brought in a
backhoe to repair the diversion ditches.
Now the bigger question for city leaders is what to
do about Mt. Angel’s aging telemetry, the automated
system that measures water levels in the two tanks – 1
million gallons and 250,000 gallons, respectively –
and messages the city’s wells below to start or stop
pumping as needed.
“Our telemetry system was installed in 1995-96,”
Bernt said. “We had a vendor come in this summer to
see what it will cost to replace, and the least expen-
sive option available to us is about $100,000.”
For now, replacement of a $750 part is keeping
things running. Correct Equipment, a 19-year-old
company with an office in Canby, has been Mt. Angel’s
Continued from Page 1A
“In the Salem area,
there are businesses that
import. You have Lowe’s,
you have Home Depot,
you have Target, Amazon,
WinCo, all of these busi-
nesses, we’ll be talking
about what they need to
bring in.”
Impact of Terminal 6
shutting down
At its peak in 2003,
Portland Terminal 6 was
a major container shipper
in the West Coast with
agricultural goods from
Oregon and Washington
being shipped to Euro-
pean and Asian markets.
175,000 20-foot contain-
ers of goods fromTermi-
nal 6 each year.
But Portland is at a dis-
advantage to other ports.
It is inland – about 100
miles up the Columbia
River – from the Pacific
“The container busi-
ness is tough because
they can’t bring the big-
gest, the maxi container
ships, to Portland be-
cause the rivers aren’t
deep enough and then
they have to bring in
smaller boats,” Smith
Repeated labor dis-
putes – combined with
the Columbia River not
being deep enough to
bring in larger container
ships – choked the vol-
ume of container ships to
under 2,000 by 2015.
Terminal 6 closed in
2016 and agricultural pro-
ducers in the Willamette
Valley were forced to
truck their containersto
Seattle or Tacoma.
“You have already
probably noticed that
there is huge congestion
with traffic,” said Steve
Rippeteau, a Brooks resi-
dent and former railroad
“Oregon is way behind
the curve on their trans-
portation infrastructure.”
Terminal 6 reopened
on a smaller scale in Jan-
uary, but most ships that
come have a maximum of
world’s largest can carry
over 20,000.
For many exporters, it
is more cost effective to
ship from ports in Oak-
land, Long Beach and Los
ECONorthwest Report
closed in 2016, the Oregon
Legislature was con-
cerned about the lack of
shipping options for pro-
ducers in the Willamette
Business Oregon com-
west to study the feasibil-
ity of an intermodal
transfer facility in the
Willamette Valley.
The report said 38,170
40-foot containers from
the Willamette Valley,
Oregon Coast and South-
ern Oregon are shipped
out of the ports of Seattle
and Tacoma each year.
The study said it costs
on average $1,000 to ship
a container out of Port-
land; it's $600 to ship
from Seattle or Tacoma.
The containers are
generally owned by the
ocean shipping compa-
nies. To use them, the
farmers drive their trucks
to Tacoma or Seattle to
pick them up, bring them
back to the farm, fill them
and drive them back to
the port.
ECONorthwest’s re-
port said an intermodal
transfer yard could be
created on a piece of land
as small as 14 acres.
The report said a facil-
ity would have to handle
over 17,000 containers
per year if it charges $50
per container to break
“We’re finding there’s
a lot more that can be
done as you start talking
to businesses confiden-
tially: ‘Hey, if we have this
facility, what can be done
with this?’” Mannix said.
Keep Oregon Moving
(HB 2017)
In 2017, the Oregon
Legislature approved a
massive $5.3 billion
transportation package.
Among the goals are to
bridges, improve public
transportation, provide
safe biking and walking
options, reducing con-
One of the solutions to
accomplish the latter two
was to create new inter-
modal rail facilities to
shift freight from trucks
to trains with the goal of
making room on free-
To that end, $26 mil-
lion was set aside as a
grant to fund an intermo-
dal facility in Treasure
Valley and $25 million for
an intermodal facility in
the Mid-Willamette Val-
The money for the in-
termodal facility comes
from lottery dollars ear-
marked for economic de-
“Oregon Department
of Transportation set up a
competitive process for
proposals to be present-
ed,” Mannix said.
For the Mid-Willam-
ette facility, five appli-
cants created proposals:
Brooks, Portland and Eu-
In February, ODOT
narrowed the choices to
Millersburg and Brooks.
Both have until Sept. 27
to turn in their next pro-
spokesperson for ODOT,
said the department will
advisor about instrumentation upgrades thus far, and
the city’s Infrastructure Task Force, led by Councilor
Don Fleck, will discuss the system at its meeting this
Meanwhile, in downtown Mt. Angel, BRX Inc., of
Albany, is nearly done with a $320,000-$340,000
water pipe replacement project that the council has
been planning and saving for since the project was
put on the city’s master plan in 2010.
“We’re replacing 1,600 feet of water line,” said City
Manager Amber Mathiesen. “The city has saved re-
serves over time for this, and we’re paying for it out of
our budget.”
Main and Markham streets are getting upsized 12-
inch mainline pipe, and John Street is getting 8-inch
pipe, an upgrade from the 4-inch pipe that’s served
residents until now. Work is expected to end this
month, before Oktoberfest opens on Sept. 13.
“Residents will notice more water flow and prob-
ably better taste because the system is looped a little
better and there are fewer dead-ends,” Bernt said.
More pipe upgrades are planned next year for the
main lines serving the Tower Lane area and Grand-
view in Mt. Angel, a new housing development cur-
rently under construction for residents 55 and older.
“That general area serves multiple homes and
Mount Angel Towers Retirement Community, and
Grandview housing is now going in,” Mathiesen said.
“We’re talking about 1,550 feet of pipe, creating a tie-
in that doesn’t exist, and looping the system.”
Grandview, a single-owner development with 56
individual homes available for lease, is new growth,
allowing the city to reach more deeply into its bank of
System Development Charge fees, collected from de-
velopers. Eighty percent of the project is eligible for
SDC funds, and Mount Angel Towers is expected to
contribute to the project also, Mathiesen said.
review the proposals,
send them to Business
Oregon for review, then
an independent third
party will review them.
“And the Transporta-
tion Commission, com-
posed of five people ap-
pointed by the governor,
is ultimately in charge of
this,” Mannix said.
Oregon Port of
Mannix wasn’t looking
to get involved in the in-
termodal transfer busi-
A business lawyer, he
met with a few farmer cli-
ents in 2016 about anoth-
er problem, but the farm-
ers told him about the
pressing issue of ship-
From that Mannix
started Oregon Shipping
Group as an advocacy or-
ganization to support re-
vitalization and develop-
ment of shipping systems
in the state. Oregon Ship-
ping Group receives sup-
port from groups all over
Oregon that are impacted
by shipping.
Group advocated for the
Keep Oregon Moving bill
and worked with the
group from Lebanon on
its intermodal proposal.
“In that process, we
identified Brooks as an-
other potential site,”
Mannix said.
“For Brooks, we creat-
ed the Oregon Port of Wil-
lamette Limited Liability
Company. Our shipping
group is a facilitator, but
it’s the Oregon Port of
Willamette LLC that is
the formal proponent of
the Brooks project..”
Oregon Port of Wil-
lamette is made up of
managing member Frank
Salerno, Mannix as the
executive director and
Connor Harrington – an
attorney at Mannix’s firm
– as Deputy Director.
Brooks is unique in
that it has two rail lines
within one mile of the in-
terchange with Interstate
5; the Oregon Port of Wil-
lamette proposal in-
cludes two sites in
The first site would be
west of Interstate 5 on 19
acres north of Antique
Powerland on the Port-
land and Western Rail-
road line.
The second site is east
of I-5 on the Union Pacific
line on land currently
owned by NORPAC and
currently used for irriga-
The Millersburg site
has gotten most of the at-
tention so far.
The former Interna-
tional Paper mill along-
side Interstate 5 is being
proposed as a site by Linn
Economic Development
The proposed Millers-
burg site has 190 acres of
industrially zoned land
and is near another 135
acres of industrially
Continued from Page 1A
out Aug. 10. The cause remains under investigation.
Fire managers said they are using a two-pronged
approach to battle the blaze by concentrating on
keeping the fire limited to 6 acres and preparing for
the possibility of needing a back burn.
"Our goal continues to be keeping this fire as small
as possible," said acting fire management officer
Chris Donaldson.
Crews worked Aug. 14 to complete fire line con-
struction and lay hose around most of the fire perim-
eter. Because some of the fire is burning on inacces-
sible cliffs, teams are also setting up sprinkler sys-
"Crews will continue to monitor and patrol the fire
in the days and weeks to come," Donaldson said.
Smoke from this burn may be visible from the
community of Detroit, portions of Highway 22, Elk
and Dunlap lakes and other peaks in the area.
Elk Lake, Dunlap Lake and Elk Lake Campground
remain open. Forest Service Roads 4696 and 4697 re-
main open, but fire managers requested travelers
avoid the area if possible.
For more information call the Detroit Ranger Sta-
tion at 503-854-3366, visit
lamette/, go to Facebook at https://www.face-, or follow on Twitter at
For questions, comments and news tips, email re-
wmwood-, call 503-399-6884 or
follow on Twitter @wmwoodworth
zoned land owned by the
City of Millersburg.
on the town for the
Steam-Up at Antique Po-
werland and in the past
few decades businesses
have sprouted up along-
side the interchange such
as Pilot Travel Center and
May Trucking Company.
But the town has no
public school – the ele-
mentary school closed a
couple years ago and its
students go to school in
Gervais – and needs in-
“We intend to be a lead
player in the Brooks com-
munity and we intend to
lead the proper develop-
ment of an area that’s go-
ing to develop,” Mannix
said. “It already has de-
veloped without a com-
munity sense.
wastewater treatment fa-
cility. The intermodal fa-
cility going in provides
the trigger for an argu-
ment that hey, now is the
time we need to reevalu-
Brooks Tree Farm
owner Kathy LeCompte
said the largest concern
of an intermodal facility
in Brooks is traffic.
The Brooks inter-
change, exit 263, is not on
potentially importing
to Brooks
have distribution centers
within a 30-mile radius of
Brooks such as Home De-
pot, WinCo and Amazon
and potentially could use
the service to import
At Port of Tucson in
Arizona (an intermodal
transfer facility) Amazon
built a fulfillment center.
have taken place, but I
would say the exporters
have shown much more
said. “The exporters are
by and large the agricul-
tural shippers and that’s
one of the main focuses —
we want to help the ex-
The ECONorthwest re-
port showed nearly 9,000
containers of goods were
shipped into the Mid-
Willamette Valley in 2014.
Mannix said the larg-
est need for businesses in
“We are a net export
state,” Mannix said. “We
export 60 units for every
40 units that we import.
There is a need for us to
have a continuing opera-
tion where we have con-
tainers coming in and
where we can get some
containers from else-
Transportation Improve-
ment Program through
2024, meaning no im-
provements on the inter-
change are scheduled
anytime soon.
But Snow said im-
provements for the inter-
change could be included
in the Port of Willamette
“Certainly by driving
by on a regular basis you
could tell that the inter-
change is very, very busy
and could use some up-
grades,” Snow said.
The freeway inter-
change is already at max-
imum capacity in peak
times and there are times
cars will line up on Inter-
state 5.
“We don’t expect mir-
acles and ... all of Oregon
is in desperate need of
better traffic,” said Le-
Compte, who said her
business will not directly
benefit from an intermo-
dal facility.
“We do see the possi-
bility of a port like this,
whether it’s the Brooks
location or the Millers-
burg, will help traffic in
the state.”
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of about 400 people.
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