PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Forest Park is a popular way for many people to get their nature fix right in the middle of the city of Portland. But a few of the popular trails will be closed this summer.
The bridges on these trails are about 40 years old and after years of wet winters — including this one — they need some repair.
“We will be replacing bridges at 3 locations, and unfortunately we will be closing the trails at that time,” said Maija Spencer with Portland Parks and Recreation. She said it’s all part of the parks replacement bond, a project to refine the popular trails.
“This is part of a bigger effort with Portland parks called ‘Renew Forest Park,” she told KOIN 6 News. “It’s a 20-year, $20 million-plus project focused on increasing accessibility to all Portlanders to this amazing resource right in our backyards.”
At least 3 trails will be closed due to the $660,000 project, including the Lower Macleay Trail.
“Construction is much easier to do in the summer when it’s dry and that means less damage to the surrounding natural area as contractors bring in gear on trails, less damage and erosion,” Spencer said. “Also, since we are doing work near streams, there is a narrow timeframe of the year that we can be doing this type of work near waterways.”
Trail runners who spoke with KOIN 6 News said they support the improvement.
“I think this park is one of the best parks in America and I’m glad we have people that want to invest money into it and improve it and keep it maintained,” Noah Dunham said.
Kate O’Malley added, “I feel like having a park with good working structures is more important than losing a little bit of time.”