Hazardous Fuel Reduction Project2022-07-21T14:09:47-07:00

MOUNTAIN PARK HAZARDOUS FUEL REDUCTION PROJECT

Mountain Park Homeowners Association and Oswego Lake Watershed Council are awardees of ODF’s 2022 Small Forestland Grant funding.  They received a grant for a collaborative urban forestry project designed to reduce the risk of  wildfire in the neighborhood of Mountain Park in Lake Oswego.

WHAT IS THE GOAL OF THE PROGRAM?
The primary goals of this project include reduction of hazardous fuels on common property, invasive species removal, promotion of healthy native plant communities, and supporting the formation of a Firewise community managed by residents of Mountain Park.

WHY DID MOUNTAIN PARK RECEIVE THE GRANT?
When understory vegetation accumulates and ladder fuels build up, they allow fires to burn, ignite and spread faster, leading to high intensity, high impact fires. When fire encounters areas of continuous brush or small trees, especially non native vegetation, it can burn these “ladder fuels” and may quickly move from a ground fire into the treetops, creating crown fires. Steep slopes, dense non-native vegetation, and the interface between wildland and urban areas present high risk for wildfires. The forested area is mainly confined to steep slopes that are topped by the residential areas, increasing the likelihood that a wildfire could develop with catastrophic results to residences – a single cigarette or coal from a barbecue has the potential to start a catastrophic wildfire in these conditions.  This forested property also contains invasive plants (including ivy, European clematis, blackberry and invasive tree species) that threaten the resilience of the forest and health of native trees, shrubs, and wildlife within the system.

WHAT WILL THE COMMON PROPERTY LOOK LIKE?
The removal of the hazardous fuel load resting on common property will provide a more fire resistant landscape that promotes healthy forest successional processes, ultimately preserving many mature, native trees from going up in flames in the event of an urban wildland fire. The changes you see will include the removal of ground fuels and ladder fuels including ivy, debris, and invasive plants including non-native trees. In some areas, this will have a distinct impact on the look of the forest, and in other areas not much difference will be visible. Please know that this is a long-term project and changes will come slowly until the end result of a resilient and re-planted urban forest is achieved.

RESOURCES

MPHOA PROJECT SUMMARY
PROJECT TIMELINE
PROJECT UPDATES
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR MPHOA
EXAMPLES OF HAZARDOUS FUELS ON CP
TEST PLOT ON CP AFTER FUEL REMOVAL

WHO IS OVERSEEING THIS PROJECT?
This project will be overseen by the Landscape Stewardship Department in conjunction with the Common Property Committee and Board of Directors.

FIREWISE COMMUNITY PROGRAM

The national Firewise USA® recognition program provides a collaborative framework to help neighbors in a geographic area get organized, find direction, and take action to increase the ignition resistance of their homes and community and to reduce wildfire risks at the local level. Click  here to learn more about the Firewise USA® Program.

Sign Up for Wildland-Urban Interface Home Assessment
The Lake Oswego Fire Department also offers assessments for homes in the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI). Assessments focus on the home ignition zone and provide recommendations on ways to eliminate the fire’s potential relationship with the house.

FIREWISE USA
FIREWISE FAQs
HOME ASSESSMENT

Over the past few years, we’ve seen wildfires in communities we never imagined – lets work together to keep Mountain Park safe.

Don Johnson, LO Fire Department Chief

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

This Frequently Asked Questions Page is an ongoing list of questions and answers intended for Mountain Park residents about the fuel reduction work that will be happening on common property in the Mountain Park neighborhood. If your question is not on this list, please utilize the “Submit A Question” form and your question will be answered at the Public Forums.

Will native vegetation be removed in sensitive lands?2022-04-28T16:13:37-07:00

No. Native tree removal will only be done when outside of sensitive lands, and to improve conditions for other healthier native trees.

Will this impact the habitat for wildlife?2022-04-28T16:14:06-07:00

Yes, this project will improve wildlife habitat. Removal of invasive plant species is a key component of this work, which will create more space for native vegetation to thrive. Healthy native plant communities support habitat for insects, birds, and other wildlife.

Is this work part of a larger plan or initiative?2022-04-28T16:14:44-07:00

Yes, the work accomplishes what is called for by existing MPHOA Board of Directors adopted policies ( MP Common Property Master Plan 2019-2024). More details can be found in the sections “Invasive Species on Common Property”, “Urban Forest”, “Habitats”, and  “Sensitive Lands”

Will all of the vegetation on common property be mowed down?2022-04-28T16:15:18-07:00

No – Treatments will be done by hand crews and will be very selective. 

Will all invasive vegetation be removed?2022-04-28T16:15:55-07:00

No. We are focusing on removal of invasive climbing vines, invasive trees, and invasive shrubs because these are the most hazardous fuels, and negatively impact forest structure. Invasive ground covers will generally not be targeted within the scope of this project, but will be addressed strategically in the future in a methodical manner. Crews will take care to avoid spreading invasive seeds while working by thoroughly cleaning boots, tools, and equipment. Monitoring will be conducted to identify the current extent of priority weed species in order to support future eradication efforts.

Will native trees be planted?2022-04-28T16:16:25-07:00

Yes, native trees from the city of Lake Oswego’s native tree list, such as Western Red Cedar, Douglas fir, Willamette Valley Ponderosa Pine, and Oregon White Oak, will be planted following best practices. These plantings will be focused on sensitive lands and in areas that are lacking species diversity.

What is Lake Oswego Forest Resiliency?2022-05-03T15:01:25-07:00

The idea of land resilience and community involvement requires a coupling of social and ecological resilience in rapidly changing landscapes affected by our warming climate. Land management is strongest when it adopts multiple perspectives of resilience. Resilient land that is actively managed using a systems based approach can respond to stress events (drought, extreme weather, fires, insect and pathogen invasions) while supporting wildlife populations, healthy soils, and healthy watersheds.

SUBMIT A QUESTION

    Questions/Comments submitted using the “Submit A Question” form above will be collected and answered at the public forums. Frequently asked questions will be added to the FAQ. Thank you for your patience.

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