A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

The explanation: Why this canal was dry

Written November 14th, 2022 by Hasso Hering

Mostly mud: The Eighth Avenue Canal at Lyon Street on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022.

It was something you don’t see very often: Albany’s Eighth Avenue Canal was dry, or almost dry, instead of carrying its usual minimal flow.

As its name implies, the canal follows Eighth Avenue east from where it starts at the Albany Santiam Canal. For two blocks, between Broadalbin and Lyon Streets, it is covered by a parking lot.

But east of Lyon it emerges again. That’s where on Saturday I took the photo above.

What was going on?

Kristin Preston is the operations manager in the public works department of the City of Albany. I asked her, and she had the answer.

One of the culverts on the canal, at Washington Street, had plugged up, she told me by email. So the crew shut off the water in order to clear the pipe.

This work was delayed by recent rains, but it was scheduled to be done this week.

From Lyon Street east, the canal — or creek, or ditch if you prefer — runs north of the Pacific Boulevard viaduct and then turns left along Thurston Street, where most of the usual flow runs through an underground pipe to the Willamette River.

That stretch of the waterway is mostly neglected and partly overgrown with brambles. The city’s transportation system plan still includes a project to enhance the canal’s route there, but no one expects this actually to be done. (hh)

Except for a little pool, this section of the canal was filled mostly with autumn leaves.



One response to “The explanation: Why this canal was dry”

  1. Bill Maddy says:

    Historicly, the canals of Takenah and Albany once served a purpose—hydropower for several mills. Today their function is only for aesthetic, drainage and water fowl habitat purposes.


HH Today: A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley
Albany Albany City Council Albany council Albany downtown Albany Fire Department Albany housing Albany parks Albany Planning Commission Albany police Albany Post Office Albany Public Works Albany riverfront Albany schools Albany Station Albany streets Albany traffic Albany urban renewal apartments ARA Benton County bicycling bike lanes Bowman Park Bryant Park Calapooia River CARA climate change COVID-19 Cox Creek Crocker Lane cumberland church cycling Dave Clark Path DEQ downtown Albany Edgewater Village Ellsworth Street bridge Highway 20 homeless housing Interstate 5 land use Linn County Millersburg Monteith Riverpark North Albany ODOT Oregon coast Oregon legislature Pacific Power Portland & Western Queen Avenue Republic Services Riverside Drive Santiam Canal Scott Lepman Talking Water Gardens The Banks Tom Cordier Union Pacific urban renewal Water Avenue Waterfront Project Waverly Lake Willamette River

Copyright 2024. All Rights Reserved. Hasso Hering.
Website Serviced by Santiam Communications
Hasso Hering