SUB Drinking Water Protection Project


SUB Well Fields, Springfield, OR

Target Habitat

Riparian habitat


2017 – Present

Project Size

1.2 acres 


 Springfield Utility Board (landowner)



In fall 2017 we began working with the Springfield Utility Board (SUB) to restore riparian habitat along Gorrie Creek in Springfield. Gorrie Creek is important to our community because it recharges SUB’s wellfield, which provides drinking water to the residents of Springfield. 

The goal of this project is to remove invasive plants like Himalayan blackberry and reed canary grass and plant native species. These native plants will eventually provide more shade than invasive plants, reducing water temperatures and improving water quality. Native plants also have deeper and more complex root systems which create more pathways for water to percolate through the soil and recharge the groundwater

Our restoration contractors from R. Franco Restoration began by removing invasive vegetation, then in winter 2018 replanted the area with 3000 native riparian plants. Because of the proximity to drinking water this is a pesticide free project, requiring repeated hand-pulling of the weeds. Over the next several years we will work with SUB to continue planting native species and maintaining the ones already planted until they reach a “free-to-grow” state. Thanks, SUB, for caring about the water we drink!


The creekside at Gorrie Creek covered in blackberry and reed canary grass prior to our work.
This is the same creekside section after the invasive plants were removed and natives planted.
A stretch along Gorrie Creek before work.
Our restoration crew at work clearing this same stretch.
Two white women pose behind a young tree holding shovels and smiling.
Staff planting day at SUB.
Volunteers help remove blackberry from Gorrie Creek.
MFWWC tour of the SUB Wellfield and Gorrie Creek restoration project.