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February 2015: Social trails become compacted, act as channels draining the wetland
A visit to April Hill Park after a rain event told a clear and obvious story that the social trails are seriously impacting the natural area. One of the impacts is these compacted trails act as channels draining the wetland. The salamander, newts, and frogs need the wetland to develop from immatures into adults. If the wetland dries up too fast, they die. This video shows how one of the social trails is draining the wetlands.
The new April Hill Park Protection Project with boardwalk, bridges and trails are designed to prevent this, providing a safe way for visitors to experience the park's natural areas with minimum impact. This project is funded by the Metro Natural Areas Bond Measure’s Nature in the Neighborhood Capital Grants Program, Portland Parks & Recreation, and generous donations by neighbors.
December 2014 April Hill Park Update
Three engineers donated their time in December for the engineering portion of the April Hill Park Wetland Protection Project, Boardwalk.
Using a hand auger, the geotechnical engineer took soil samples, one foot at a time until reaching more than 6 feet down. They check the depth of the creek, Woods Creek. It is about 10 feet from the bottom of the creek to the top of the bank.
The Geotechnical Engineer needs to touch and feel the soil. The color is important too.
The Bridge Engineer checked both the width and depth of the creek. The depth from the top of the bank to the bottom of the creek was about 10 feet. These measurements are part of what determines the size of the bridge.
November 15th, 2014 April Hill Park Clean Up Party
Sponsored by Friends of April Hill Park and the Maplewood Neighborhood Association. The first picture shows the "before" and the last picture shows the "after." A very hearty crew did a great job of removing the invasive blackberry! The ice leaf was a found treasure.
On May 31, 2013, Metro Council announced its award of a $83,059 Nature in Neighborhoods Capital Grant toward the cost of constructing a boardwalk, two bridges, and a wildlife observation platform in the wetland area of the park. The goal of this project is to provide safe access to the wetland for Maplewood School students, neighbors, and other visitors while protecting habitat for sensitive amphibians and plants. Letters of support for the project were sent in by Maplewood PTA Outdoor Explorers Committee, Art4Life, Wildwood Preschool, SW Watershed Resource Center, SW Trails, and others. The grant provides about 1/3 of the project cost. Another 1/2 of the project cost will be contributed through a combination of Portland Parks & Recreation funds and matching volunteer time from the Friends of April Hill Park, SW Watershed Resource Center, and professionals who have committed in-kind services to the project. We have less than 1/6 of the project cost left to fundraise! Ready to help?
If you prefer to donate by check, make payable to Southwest Neighborhoods, Inc. or "SWNI" and write "April Hill Park" on the memo line. Mail to:
7688 SW Capitol Hwy.
Portland, OR 97219
Would you be interested in hosting a party or other social event to raise awareness and donations for this project? You provide the space and the invite list, we'll do the rest! Email Friends of April Hill Park for details.