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Sampling of riverbed signals the start of Sellwood Bridge rebuild

by: David F. Ashton A drilling rig prepares to take soil samples beneath the Willamette River as a first step in rebuilding the Sellwood Bridge.

On July 1st, barge-based drilling equipment appeared in the Willamette River near the Sellwood Bridge, and started drilling cores to collect soil data from beneath the riverbed.

The soil samples will help engineers design the in-water piers to support the temporary detour bridge while the new Sellwood Bridge is to be constructed.

Core drilling in the river will continue periodically through October, between 7:30 am and 5 pm, Mondays through Fridays - subject to change, as the drilling project is reviewed by Multnomah County.

The project has proposed to install six test steel piles in the river in September. The test piles will be left in place and used in the foundations for the piers to support the detour bridge. They will be clearly marked to make them visible for river users.