County, Port, and City Partner for Economic Development in Kennewick

County, Port, and City Partner for Economic Development in Kennewick

Kennewick, WA – On Tuesday, May 9, 2017, at 1:30 p.m., Benton County, Port and City of Kennewick elected officials; Columbia Basin College representatives; wine industry representatives; community leaders; Historic Downtown Kennewick Partnership business members; and community members will gather for an important announcement regarding Phase 2 of the Columbia Gardens Urban Wine & Artisan Village and The Willows/CBC Culinary Institute, in Historic Downtown Kennewick. The wine village site is located on the Columbia River interior waterfront, near the Cable Bridge. The ceremony will be held at 301 E. Columbia Drive, Kennewick Washington.

Who: Media and public invited
What: Announcing County Investment in Columbia Drive Urban Renewal Area
When: Tuesday, May 9, 2017, at 1:30 p.m.
Where: 301 E. Columbia Drive, Kennewick, Washington
Why: Celebrate the first project approved for renewed Rural County Capital Funds

The Partnership

Columbia Gardens Phase 2 is an excellent kick-off project for Benton County’s renewed Rural County Capital Fund partnership program for several reasons. It is a large, high-visibility project that renovates and repurposes properties in an area that is key to furthering the Port’s Columbia Drive Revitalization Area, and is within the City’s Bridge-to-Bridge, River-to-Railroad Revitalization Zone, while leveraging resources from multiple partners and making significant strides toward adding jobs and tax revenues within Historic Downtown Kennewick. The County is contributing a total of $2.1 million dollars to the site, with $1.1 million dedicated to the Urban Wine Village Phase 2 project infrastructure and the other $1 million for The Willows infrastructure.

The Project

The Columbia Gardens Urban Wine and Artisan Village and The Willows (site of the future CBC Culinary Institute) are Port of Kennewick-owned development sites located between Columbia Drive and Duffy’s Pond in Kennewick, adjacent to Clover Island. The Port and City had partnered previously on Phase 1 improvements including constructing a public trail, three wine production/tasting room buildings, streetscape, and a wine waste-water pre-treatment facility. The County’s investment will fund additional development costs including roads, parking, storm drainage, lighting, landscaping, and appurtenances to serve both Columbia Gardens Phase 2 and The Willows. This project prepares those sites for future commercial and residential opportunities. The goal of the project is to revitalize the historic Kennewick waterfront near Clover Island through infrastructure improvements that will in turn support business development, tourism, education, and provide employment opportunities.

Rural County Capital Funds

The Rural County Capital Fund affords Benton County’s municipal partners with the rare opportunity to access large chunks of locally-sourced capital funds without having to endure a lot of bureaucratic process or long wait times. Funds are being set aside for each jurisdiction on a monthly basis as they are accumulated, and are available for a wide range of projects that meet the economic development criteria of State law and County policy. The municipal partners that are eligible for funds are: Benton County, Port of Benton, Port of Kennewick, City of Kennewick, City of Prosser, City of Richland, and City of West Richland. The Columbia Drive Urban Renewal Area investment represents the County’s first project approved for an investment of renewed Rural County Capital Funds.