Project Name

Thompson's Mills

Dam Removal and Restoration
Client / Agency
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department
Shedd, Oregon
2010 to present
Project Description
River Design Group, Inc. (RDG) was retained by Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) to gather data and develop alternatives for an off-line water delivery system for the historic Thompson’s Mills (mill) on the Calapooia River near Shedd, Oregon. Water was historically delivered to the mill via a system of three dams and conveyance channels including the Calapooia River, the Roberts Road connector ditch, Walton Slough, and the Thompson’s Mills’ millrace. With the planned removal of Sodom Dam on the Sodom Ditch and the Shearer Dam on the Calapooia River, the historic water delivery system will no longer function as it has in the past. An alternative water delivery system is necessary to ensure water delivery to the mill. Considerations for the delivery system alternatives include maintaining the mill’s historic and aesthetic qualities, providing an on-site water source that meets firefighting requirements, and enabling the mill to continue current operations with the potential for demonstration of machinery.

RDG completed a field survey and alternatives analysis for OPRD. A public meeting was held with OPRD, the Calapooia Watershed Council, regulatory agency personnel, Boston Mill Society, and interested landowners. During a public presentation in April 2011, the stakeholder group provided feedback to OPRD and RDG regarding the three presented alternatives. OPRD will continue to develop the preferred alternative with project implementation planned for 2012.