This fall, the Port of Portland begins a project to remove trees that are starting to grow into the federally-regulated airspace at Portland International Airport. The trees will be replaced with lower-growing, native vegetation. The work will take place in several phases to help increase the survival rate of the new vegetation. The project will take a little over a year to complete and is expected to run through late 2014.
Under Federal Aviation Administration requirements, the Port is responsible for ensuring the airspace at PDX remains free of obstructions to continue to maintain safe aircraft operations. The stand of black cottonwoods in the Blue Economy Parking Lot is growing to heights that are beginning to penetrate regulated airspace. As growth continues, the trees could affect the instruments that help aircraft land on the north runway.
The trees have been topped in the past to address the problem, however, repeated topping makes them hazardous to work around. Permanently removing the cottonwoods provides a long-term, sustainable solution. Approximately 400 cottonwoods will be removed. Other tree and plant species that do not pose a present or future risk to the airspace will remain at the site. The trees will be replaced with more than 23,000 native shrub and small tree species such as vine maple, Oregon grape, red-flowering currant and native roses and willow.
Artist’s rendering of future site conditions following project completion.
Lisa Timmerman at 503.415.6047