Wastewater Treatment Facilities


Project Status
In Design or Study

Project Type


City of Estacada owns and operates our Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP), which is nearing capacity, with equipment that is at the end of its useful life. The current plant was built in 1963 and has undergone multiple improvements. The current plant would need to be updated due to age, regardless of growth. To best serve our community, the City plans to replace the WWTP with the latest technology to protect the Clackamas River watershed, comply with permitted waste discharge limits, and ensure the City’s commitment to environmental stewardship.

  • Project Goal: To build a facility which will process wastewater into the cleanest possible discharge, while accommodating growth for the next thirty years.
  • What: We will build a Membrane Bioreactor Treatment Facility. This will not only be able to handle the next thirty years of growth, but will produce the best quality output (effluent) for watershed protection.
  • Where: We will build on city owned property across the street from the current plant, taking up a portion of Portal Park.

Estimated Timeline for Construction:

September2023Submit Predesign Report to DEQ
September202330% Design
May202360% Design
June202490% Design
August2024100% Design
September2024Bid Period
October2024Contract Award-Construction
March2026 Construction Completion

City staff and Council have been working since 2021 to determine a location for the new plant to be built. View the Wastewater Facility Search Timeline (PDF).

Wastewater Treatment Plant FAQs

Will we be able to repurpose the old wastewater plant site?

Yes, the old wastewater plant will be completely decommissioned. That property will eventually be repurposed. The use of that property has not yet been fully considered. The use of the space will need to be decided upon, and then funds raised to build the space for this use.

Are we too far into the design to consider relocating the Public Works Shops elsewhere to preserve the open space/park land adjacent to the river?

The location is chosen to be the lot that the city owns. We are too far along in the process to change locations. However, the layout is still in design stages so it is the perfect time to consider the best use and arrangement of the current PW buildings and the exact location of the wastewater facility on the City lot. We evaluated building the WWTP on the Public Works shops and rebuilding the shops elsewhere on the same lot. This would add at least $5 million to the project cost.

How did the City Council discuss and vote on the location of the new Wastewater Treatment Plant? Was the topic on a council agenda?

The Council is allowed to discuss real estate transactions in an executive session, and the City Attorney was advising the City Council through the process so that they would follow any legal requirements. For the August 14, 2023, City Council Meeting, the Wastewater Treatment Plant discussion was an agenda item following executive session. If the Council had directed staff to begin negotiations on a property purchase, they would not have been able to discuss the location of the property that evening. The topic was listed as a general discussion on the agenda following the executive session, and there were members of the public who attended the meeting and commented.

You can view the meeting packet, minutes, and video where the Council discusses their decision here: https://www.cityofestacada.org/bc/meeting/city-council-meeting-0

Following the executive session (which was not recorded) the City Attorney gives a thorough overview of the process and the decision. (approx. 1 hour 26 minutes into the meeting).

How was the location chosen?

The original location for the wastewater facility in 2021 was on the Public Works/Portal site. At the direction of the Council, city staff have spent the past two years seeking out options for property where the wastewater facility could be built rather than on the City property, however, due to land use restrictions, costs, time constraints, and the availability of willing property sellers, the most viable location is the City property that was chosen.

Is the design the city is sharing the final design?

The design showing in the preliminary plan (see page 135 of the Preliminary Design Report) just shows feasibility on the lot. While we are still in the process of layout, many of the processes require a specific layout with buildings set in a strategic position. We may adjust the layout but there are many variables which will ultimately decide the layout.

Status Updates

  • 9/26/2023 - The City was awarded a grant from the State of Oregon in the amount of $2.4 million to assist with the cost of the new wastewater facility. View the Award Letter (PDF).
  • 08/14/2023 - After much deliberation, the council chose to build the new wastewater treatment facilities on property already owned by the city. The new plant will be built off of Tulip Road in Estacada.