PSB Seismic Retrofit Project achieves milestone

For Immediate Release: Thursday, May 23, 2019

Sponsored by: Support Services Department

For more than two years, Washington County’s Charles D. Cameron Public Services Building (PSB) in downtown Hillsboro has been under construction to achieve seismic stability in the event of a major earthquake. The work has progressed in two phases, including a complete relocation of staff and services, first in the North and then the South wings of the building. Recently, design and construction partners SERA Architects and JE Dunn Construction completed the scope of their work to accomplish the seismic retrofit as well as water mitigation and efficiency upgrades to building systems.


New concrete shear walls are now in place and are structurally connected to dozens of horizontal steel collector beams, interior column reinforcements and massive concrete footings which anchor the seismic reinforcements to the foundation of the building. Soil removal and installation of an elaborate drain and pump system have occurred around the North wing to prevent water intrusion into the basement. Efficiency upgrades to critical buildings systems are also complete, including mechanical, lighting and security.


With the issuance of a “Temporary Certificate of Occupancy” from the City of Hillsboro last week, the County’s Facilities and Parks Services Division will continue to finalize extensive internal remodeling in the South wing for several more weeks. Although construction fencing has been removed and access to the South wing is now open, it will remain unoccupied until late summer when staff and services will begin returning in scheduled waves throughout August and October. As stated by Capital Project Manager Bassam Khalifeh, “We’re extremely grateful for the continued support and patience from everyone involved during this long and difficult process. I’m confident that the whole effort will be worth it when a big earthquake hits and lives are saved.” Khalifeh also encourages the community to attend a project open house planned for mid-September with additional details to follow in the coming weeks.


Current locations for specific programs and services within Land Use and Transportation, Health and Human Services and Support Services can all be found online at or by calling 503-846-8611.

Media Contact:

Julie McCloud, Public Affairs & Communications Coordinator