Permit Application Public Notices

The United States Congress authorizes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to regulate activities that may impact wetlands and waters of the United States. This authority is granted and defined under Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 and Section 404 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, also known as the Clean Water Act.

Public involvement is a key element of the Corps’ permit review process. During an application review, the Corps considers the views of other federal, state and local agencies, Native American tribes, interest groups, and the general public. The results of this careful public interest review are fair and equitable decisions that allow reasonable use of private property, infrastructure development, and growth of the economy, while offsetting the authorized impacts to the waters of the United States.

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Portland District
Published Aug. 4, 2021
Expiration date: 9/3/2021

Application for Permit

Issue Date: August 4, 2021
Expiration Date: September 3, 2021
US Army Corps of Engineers No: NWP-2013-288-3 

30-Day Notice                                 

Interested parties are hereby notified that all or a portion of the work as described below and shown on the attached plans was performed without specific authorization from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Corps’ permit regulations (33 CFR 326.3(e)) allow the District Engineer to accept an after-the-fact permit application to evaluate whether an activity is contrary to the public interest. Based on a preliminary review, the Corps has accepted an after-the-fact permit application for this project. The Corps is soliciting comments on the existing and proposed work.
Applicant:    Port of Vancouver USA
                        Attention: Matt Harding
                        3103 NW Lower River Road 
                        Vancouver, WA 98660
                        Telephone: (360-823-5317)

Applicant’s Agent:     WSP USA 
                                        Attention: Dusty Day
                                        210 East 13th Street, Suite 300
                                        Vancouver, WA 98660
                                        Telephone: (360-823-6109)

Location: The project site is located at 3675, 3599, and 4299 NW Harborside Drive, in Vancouver, Clark County, Washington. The site is in Section 20, Township 2 North, Range 1 East.  Latitude and Longitude: 45.641506 North, 122.716874 West

Waterway: Columbia River (River Mile 104)

Project Purpose: The applicant’s stated purpose is to provide an ecologically sensitive, long-term solution to bank stabilization at the site and to maintain and protect an existing gravel roadway and other upland infrastructure.

Project Description: The proposed project is a combination of structural and bioengineered bank stabilization adjacent to the Port of Vancouver Terminal 4 site. The applicant proposes to excavate 3340 cubic yards of material and discharge 3925 cubic yards in 0.567 acres of the Columbia River below the ordinary high water mark (OHWM). The proposed work would consist of excavation of the shoreline to prepare for placement of bank stabilization in areas where riprap is needed and backfill with riprap, gravel, and previously excavated sand to match the original beach contours. The proposed work would also include planting of native vegetation. The work would occur in three zones. Within zone 1, there is currently no riprap and the entire bank would be stabilized with vegetated riprap. Within zone 2, the area is partially stabilized with riprap which would be supplemented with new riprap and planted with native vegetation. Zone 3 is already stabilized with riprap and the area would be planted with native vegetation. 

Within Zones 1 and 2, the proposed work would require excavation along the shoreline to re-establish the bank slope at a 2:1 bank slope for rip-rap placement. Once the subgrade is established, an approximately 8-inch thick layer of gravel filter layer would be installed with a second gravel filter layer approximately 10-inches thick above that layer. Riprap would be placed on top of these gravel filter layers measuring approximately 2.8 feet thick through the planting area. Once the riprap is installed, excavated sand would be placed back over the top of the armored bank to match the original beach contours. 

The existing gravel road at the top of the bank would also be graded away from the bank so that stormwater run-off is directed to the existing stormwater pond at Terminal 4. This work occurs in the uplands. 

All work would be completed using a tracked excavator operating from the beach during low water and outside of the wetted channel. 

Mitigation: The applicant proposes to avoid and minimize impacts from the project by conducting work below the OHWM during the dry period and outside the wetted channel, implementing temporary erosion and sedimentation controls, maintaining all equipment to prevent release of hazardous or toxic substances, use of biodegradable hydraulic fluids in all equipment used below the OHWM, proper storage of all fuels and petroleum products, and disposal of all waster and unused materials in upland locations. The applicant did not propose compensatory mitigation in the permit application. The Corps will determine the type and amount of compensatory mitigation necessary to offset environmental losses from the proposed project.

Drawings:  Twenty (20) drawings are attached and labeled Corps No. NWP-2013-288-3 Copies of this public notice, which have been mailed or otherwise physically distributed, feature project drawings in black and white. The electronic version features those drawings in color, which we think more accurately illustrates the proposed project. To access the electronic version of this public notice, go to the Portland District Regulatory website at and select Regulatory Public Notices from the list of Regulatory pages.

Additional Information: This application is associated with bank stabilization activities previously authorized by Nationwide Permit 3 verification issued December 15, 2017. The work associated with that verification inadvertently exceeded the authorized footprint. The applicant self-reported the unauthorized work and has been working with the Corps to develop a long-term solution. The current application proposes authorization of the previously unauthorized work as well as additional work to complete the stabilization of the Terminal 4 shoreline. 

Authority: The proposed project will be evaluated under the following:

    Section 10, Rivers and Harbors Act 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403), for work in or affecting navigable waters of the United States.

    Section 404, Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344), for discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States.

Clean Water Act Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines: The described discharge will be evaluated for compliance with guidelines promulgated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under authority of Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act. The 404(b)(1) Guidelines are the substantive criteria used in evaluating discharges of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States. The Corps will evaluate the fill material source (i.e., borrow site) prior to finalizing a permit decision.

Water Quality Certification: Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1341) requires applicants to obtain a water quality certification for proposed discharges into waters of the United States. A permit for the described work will not be issued until certification has been issued or is waived from the certifying state. 

Endangered Species: Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) (16 U.S.C. 1536) requires federal agencies to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and/or U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) on all actions that may affect a species listed (or proposed for listing) under the ESA as threatened or endangered or that may adversely modify designated critical habitat. The Corps’ preliminary review indicates the described activity may affect an endangered or threatened species or designated critical habitat. The Corps will initiate consultation under Section 7 of the ESA. The Corps will complete the required consultation prior to finalizing a permit decision.

Essential Fish Habitat: Section 305(b)(2) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) as amended (16 U.S.C. 1855), requires Federal agencies to consult with the NMFS on all actions, or proposed actions, permitted, funded, or undertaken by the agency, that may adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH). The Corps’ preliminary review indicates the described activity would adversely affect EFH at the project location or in the vicinity. The Corps will initiate consultation under Section 305(b)(2) of the MSA. The Corps will complete the required consultation prior to finalizing a permit decision.

Historic Properties/Cultural Resources: Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (54 U.S.C. 306108), requires Federal agencies to consult with the appropriate State and/or Tribal Historic Preservation Officer to take into account the effects of actions they undertake or permit on historic properties listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. The Corps’ preliminary review indicates to the best of our knowledge, the described activity is not located on property registered or eligible for registration in the latest published version of the National Register of Historic Places. At this time the Corps is unaware of any cultural resource surveys of the project area. 

This notice has been provided to the Washington Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, interested Native American Tribes, and other interested parties. If you have information pertaining to cultural resources within the permit area, please provide this information to the Corps’ project manager identified at the end of this notice to assist in a complete evaluation of potential effects.

State and Local Authorizations: The applicant will be applying for the following additional governmental authorizations for the project: City of Vancouver Shoreline Substantial Development Permit, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Hydraulic Project Approval, and Washington Department of Ecology Section 401 Water Quality Certification. 

Public Hearing: Any person may request in writing within the comment period specified in this notice that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests for public hearings shall state with particularity the reasons for holding a public hearing.

Evaluation: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact, including cumulative impacts, of the described activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefit, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the described activity, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors, which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.

The Corps is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Native American Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of the proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

Submitting Comments: Interested parties are invited to provide comments on the proposed project.  Comments may be submitted by conventional mail or email. All comments received will be considered in determining whether authorizing the work would be contrary to the public interest. 

Either conventional mail or e-mail comments must include the Corps reference number as shown on page 1 and include the commenter’s name and address. In order to be accepted, e-mail comments must originate from the author’s e-mail account and must include on the subject line of the e-mail message the Corps reference number. All comments received will become part of the administrative record and are subject to public release under the Freedom of Information Act including any personally identifiable information such as names, phone numbers, and addresses.

Additional information about the proposed project may be obtained from the Corps Project Manager listed below. All comments, whether by conventional mail or email, must be received no later than the expiration date of this public notice to ensure consideration. Comments should be submitted to the following mailing address or email address

        U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
        Regulatory Branch
        Trey Fraley 
        P.O. Box 2946
        Portland, Oregon 97208-2946
        Email:        Telephone: (503) 808-4632