Tualatin Basin Water Supply Project

Tualatin Valley Watershed on a sunny day with small boat in the water.

Expanding Water Services 

As communities in the Tualatin Basin continue to grow, more water is needed for municipal drinking water and industrial uses. In addition, more water is needed to augment flow in the Tualatin River and its tributaries for water quality. In 2001, water resource agencies in the Tualatin Basin formed a partnership to study and decide how to best serve the water needs of the future. Beaverton has financially participated in the Tualatin Basin Water Supply Project (TBWSP) feasibility work since signing an agreement in 2001 with the other project partners. 

The TBWSP involves: 

  • A large pumping station located below the dam to pump water from the Tualatin River into the lake during the winter 
  • Construction of a large pipeline from the dam to the Joint Water Commission (JWC) Water Treatment Plant 
  • Expansion of the JWC Water Treatment Plant south of Forest Grove 
  • Raising the height of Scoggins Dam (which forms Hagg Lake) 

Scoggins Dam and Hagg Lake are owned by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR), which built the facility in 1970. The TBWSP will add approximately 53,000 acre-feet of water to Scoggins Reservoir (Hagg Lake) per year (one acre-foot is the amount of water it takes to fill an acre of area with one foot of water). The City of Beaverton is a partner and has a 3.8% interest in the project to eventually own an additional 2,000 acre-feet (0.65 billion gallons). The city currently has a contract with the USBR that gives the city a right to use up to 4,000 acre-feet each year (1.3 billion gallons). 

Project Partners 

The TBWSP is a collaborative effort. Besides providing additional supply for municipal water needs, the project will provide environmental benefits and a stable water supply for agricultural uses. Clean Water Services is the lead agency for the project, providing project management and public involvement. 

Project partners include: 

Draft Planning Report / Environmental Impact Statement (PR/EIS) 

The tentative schedule for completion of the project’s Draft PR/EIS was fall/winter 2009. The Draft PR/EIS will be published by the USBR and distributed to interested parties. It also will be available for review on the city’s website and at various local libraries. 

USBR Title Transfer 

Tualatin Basin Water Supply Project (TBWSP) partners are working with the USBR to transfer ownership of Scoggins Dam, Hagg Lake (and adjoining federal lands), and irrigation facilities from the USBR to the TBWSP partners. The title transfer also would include operation and maintenance responsibilities, legal liability and regulatory requirements to the TBWSP. 

Title transfer offers several potential benefits to both local water resource managers and the federal government: 

  • Flexibility: Local ownership and control of facilities and water rights would reducedecisionmaking complexity and improve flexibility of water management. 
  • Efficiency: Local ownership would allow for the more efficient management of water resources in the Tualatin Basin as decisions are made on a local basis. 
  • Improved Integration: Local ownership would allow regional water mangers to better integrate operations of Scoggins Reservoir (Hagg Lake) and Barney Reservoir to meet water needs of the basin. 
  • Reduce Federal Obligations: Title transfer would allow the federal government to divest itself of responsibility for ongoing operations, maintenance, replacement, and liability. Time/Cost Savings: Local ownership could offer significant time and cost saving for future improvements.