Experts in geotech, engineering discuss due diligence efforts on 46-acre former pumice mine site

By Christine Coffin

Experts who have analyzed the 46-acre site Oregon State University – Cascades is considering for its expansion, will present their findings and answer questions from the public during a panel discussion.  The discussion will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 26 in Cascades Hall, room 107, on College Way in Bend.

Each panelist has been involved in executing due diligence on the site over the past 24 months, including environmental analysis, geotechnical investigation, slope stability analysis and other areas.  Their studies and conclusions are informing the university’s decision to purchase the property, which was formerly used as a pumice mine.  The university anticipates that a decision will be made later this fall.  The panelists include:

  • Toby Scott, a senior project manager and hydrogeologist with PBS Engineering and Environmental Inc.
  • Brad Wilcox, a senior engineer with Carlson Testing, a materials testing, special inspection and geotechnical engineering firm
  • Marty Chase, principal of KPFF, an multi-disciplinary engineering firm with offices in Portland

The meeting takes place as OSU-Cascades embarks on a second community engagement process, which will inform long-range planning for the university as it adds students, faculty and academic programming.

In addition to possible expansion onto the former pumice mine, the university has also entered into a non-binding letter of intent with Deschutes County that provides a framework for exploring the viability of reclaiming the 76-acre formerdemolition landfill, also adjacent to the campus.

Together, these two properties provide options for a 56- or 132-acre campus.  Another expansion option includes buildings in close proximity to the campus.

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