Richland is a city in Benton County in the southeastern part of the State of Washington, at the confluence of the Yakima and the Columbia Rivers. As of the 2010 census, the city's population was 48,058. July 1, 2017, estimates from the Census Bureau put the city's population at 56,243. Along with the nearby cities of Pasco and Kennewick, Richland is one of the Tri-Cities, is home to the Hanford nuclear site. For centuries, the village of Chemna stood at the mouth of the current Yakima River. Today that village site is called Columbia Point. From this village, the Wanapum and Walla Walla Indians harvested the salmon runs entering the Yakima River. Captain William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition visited the mouth of the Yakima River on October 17, 1805. In 1904–1905, W. R. Amon and his son Howard purchased 2,300 acres and proposed a town site on the north bank of the Yakima River. Postal authorities approved the designation of this town site as Richland in 1905, naming it for Nelson Rich, a state legislator and land developer.
In 1906, the town was registered at the Benton County Courthouse. It was incorporated on April 1910, as a Washington Fourth Class City. Richland was a small farm town until the U. S. Army purchased 640 sq mi of land – half the size of Rhode Island – along the Columbia River during World War II, evicting the 300 residents of Richland as well as those of the now vanished towns of White Bluffs and Hanford just upriver; the army turned it into a bedroom community for the workers on its Manhattan Project facility at the nearby Hanford Engineering Works. The population increased from 300 in July and August 1943 to 25,000 by the end of World War II in August 1945. All land and buildings were owned by the government. Housing was assigned to residents and token rent was collected. Everything necessary was provided, from free bus service to light bulbs, trees were planted in people's yards by the government. Much of the city was planned by Spokane architect Gustav Albin Pherson and overseen by the Army Corps of Engineers.
While there were dormitories and barracks built at the time, prefabricated duplexes and single family homes are all that survive today. Because homes were allocated based on family size and need, there were a number of floorplans available; these were each identified by a letter of the alphabet, so came to be known as alphabet houses. In 1954 Harold Orlando Monson was elected the first mayor of Richland and traveled to Washington, D. C. to negotiate increased rights for citizens in military cities across the country. Richland's link to the Army Engineers is suggested by its street nomenclature; the main street is named after the first president, a surveyor. The rule is that if alphabet houses reside on a given street, it is named either after an engineer or a type of tree. With the end of the war, the Hanford workers' camp located fifteen miles north of Richland at the old Hanford town site, was closed down. Although many of the workers moved away as the war effort wound down, some of them moved to Richland, offsetting the depopulation that might otherwise have occurred.
Fears that the Soviet Union's intentions were aggressive set off the Cold War in 1947. The capacity to produce plutonium was increased beginning in 1947; when the Soviet Union developed and tested their first nuclear weapon in 1949, the U. S. nuclear program was reinvigorated. A second post-WW II expansion began in 1950 as a result of the war in Korea. Richland's Cold War construction boom resulted in Richland's population growing to 27,000 people by 1952. Many of these people lived in a construction camp of trailers located in. With time, these trailers were vacated and the core city grew. Others lived at Camp Columbia near Horn Rapids until the camp was closed in 1950. In 2005 several dozen houses built in the northern part of the core city during this boom were added to the National Register of Historic Places as the Gold Coast Historic District; the government got out of the landlord business in 1957 when the real estate was sold to the residents. Most of the people lived in duplexes. Richland was incorporated in 1958 as an open self-governed city.
As part of the transition, large areas of undeveloped land became city property. Richland's financial dependency on the federal Hanford facility changed little at this time because Hanford's mission as a weapons materials production site continued during the Cold War years. At some point and photographs of the Hanford military facilities became declassified by the U. S. government. Those digitized records are considered to be in the public domain, are hosted on the online Hanford Document Retrieval System. Historical events, such as a visit to the property by President Richard Nixon, are stored on the database. With the shutdown of the last production reactor in 1987, the area transitioned to environmental cleanup and technology. Now, many Richland residents are employed at the Hanford site in its environmental cleanup mission. Richland High School's sports teams are call
Cheney is a city in Spokane County, United States. The full-time resident population was 10,590 as of 2010 census. Eastern Washington University is located in Cheney; when classes are in session at EWU, the city's population reaches 17,600 people on a temporary basis. Named for Boston railroad tycoon Benjamin Pierce Cheney, Cheney was incorporated on November 28, 1883; the City of Cheney is located in Spokane County and is home to 10,590 residents, according to the 2010 Census. Cheney is proud of its small town nature, enhanced by the diverse influence of Eastern Washington University, a public regional university with over 10,000 full-time students; the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League have held the majority of their summer training camps at EWU, from 1976–1985, again from 1997 through the 2006 training camp. Cheney developed into the city known today because of its strong ties to education, trail riding, agriculture; this provided a strong economic base for the community and was the result of a much larger event that took place in the United States.
In 1858, the last Indian uprising occurred in Eastern Washington. Because isolated Eastern Washington was an area of this Indian unrest during the early part of the territorial period, it was not until the late 1860s and early 1870s that settlers made homes in the area. In the latter part of that decade, settlers attracted by plentiful water and timber and the promise of a railway line made their homes near a group of springs bubbling through a willow copse from the bank where the Burlington Northern depot now stands; the name of the community Section Thirteen, became Willow Springs became Depot Springs, because of its ties to the railroad Billings, in honor of a president of the Northern Pacific Company, Cheney, Washington in honor of Benjamin P. Cheney, a director of the Northern Pacific Railroad. Benjamin P. Cheney was the eldest son of a blacksmith, born in 1815 at Hillsborough, New Hampshire. At age 16, he started work as a stagecoach driver between Keene. Five years he had become a stage agent in Boston and soon organized an express between Boston and Montreal.
He consolidated that stagecoach line with others to form the United States and Canada Express Company, which 37 years he merged with American Express, at which time he became American Express's largest shareholder. The only time Cheney visited the town of Cheney was on September 18, 1883, following the "Last Spike Ceremony", the joining of the eastern and western divisions of the railroad. Cheney donated a few bucks to establish the Benjamin P. Cheney Academy in the town; the railroad donated 8 acres of land. In 1880 the railroad was graded through the town, in 1883 the town was incorporated with the streets laid out in the shape of a triangle with the base parallel to the tracks; the railroad tracks were not in a true east-west line, however, so the original town is askew with the map. After a series of boundary changes caused by legislative acts, Spokane County was created with a permanent county seat still to be selected. Contenders for the honor were Spokane Falls. Cheney received a majority of the votes, but because of alleged irregularities at the polls the election was won by Spokane Falls.
When this was taken to court, a circuit court judge agreed to a ballot recount. Such recount failed to materialize and the citizens of Cheney took matters into their own hands. On a night when most of the residents of Spokane Falls were at a gala wedding celebration, a delegation of armed "Cheneyites" invaded the Auditor's office and took possession of the books, did their own ballot recount which showed Cheney the victor, made off into the darkness with the records; the "Grand Steal" was not contested and was confirmed by a court decision in 1881. Cheney remained the county seat until 1886 when the faster-growing Spokane Falls again brought the issue to a vote and regained the seat. From this point on, the history of Cheney revolves around the growth of the State Normal School Eastern Washington College of Education Eastern Washington State College and Eastern Washington University; the fierce determination of Cheney to build and promote its college was to regain its lost prestige over the county seat.
When Washington became a state in 1889, Cheney was able to obtain legislation establishing one of the state normal schools, mandatory under the Enabling Act, in Cheney. Its most convincing argument was that it had the physical beginnings of a normal school in the Benjamin P. Cheney Academy. Disagreement between legislators and governors resulted in three appropriation vetoes for the normal school in the next 25 years, but in each case, the citizens of Cheney somehow raised the funds to keep the college going until the next legislative session; the growth of the Cheney Normal School and the transformation of the frontier land into a thriving community were the basis for the changing attitudes in this area. The innovators who created the small community atmosphere were the women of the frontier. All of the energies that were once focused into making the west a home for their families were transformed into creating a vision of preferred lifestyle choices for the youth; the Battle of Four Lakes occurred on September 1, 1858 five miles north of the City of Cheney in an area known as Four Lakes, Washington.
The Battle of Four Lakes was the final battle in a two-phase expedition against a confederation of the Coeur d'Alene, Spokane and Northern Paiute tribes from the states of Washington and Idaho
Sunnyside is a city in Yakima County, United States. As of the 2010 census the population was 15,858. On September 16, 1902, residents voted 42 to one to incorporate as the town of Sunnyside. By state law a town needed to have 300 citizens in order to incorporate. With 314 residents, Sunnyside was just eligible to vote for incorporation; the first mayor of Sunnyside was the town druggist James Henderson. The settlement was founded by Walter Granger in 1893; the name "Sunnyside" was coined by a merchant named W. H. Cline. Granger was involved in the financing and construction of the Sunnyside Canal which would allow Yakima River water to irrigate the area. However, due to the Panic of 1893, Granger's creditors foreclosed on the canal, the town's population dwindled to seven families. However, by the end of 1901, the population had doubled exceeding 300 people; the townsite contained "1 bank, 11 stores, 3 hotels, 1 newspaper, 2 blacksmith shops, 2 livery barns, 3 churches, a large and growing school."Sunnyside's population increase at this time was stimulated by the immigration of the Dunkards from South Dakota who were moving to the town.
The population of Dunkards was of such notable size that by 1902 it was noted that they had "built a commodious place of worship at Sunnyside", the largest church in Yakima County at the time. The Dunkards, members of the German Baptist Progressive Brethren, relocated to Sunnyside in order to form what they called the Christian Cooperative Colony; the Brethren bought the entire town site and were the developers of its first bank, a telephone system. They enforced clauses prohibiting alcohol and gambling as a condition on every parcel of land sold; because of this, old maps of Washington identify the town with a halo symbol. In the 1930s, refugees from the Dust Bowl moved to Sunnyside. Under the leadership of mayor William Bright "Billy" Cloud, Sunnyside initiated a project to pave its dirt streets on June 5, 1917; this project was necessary since years of irrigation had raised the water table to the point that the streets had become unbearably muddy. The cost of the entire project was $62,629.45.
In 1948, Sunnyside became the first city in the State of Washington to adopt the Council-manager plan of government. This plan provides for an elected city council, responsible for policy making, a professional city manager, appointed by the council, responsible for administration; the city manager provides policy advice, directs the daily operations of city government, handles personnel functions and is responsible for preparing the city budget. Under the council-manager statutes, the city council is prohibited from interfering with the manager's administration; the city manager. Sunnyside was awarded the distinction of being an All-America City in 1979. First held in 1989, the'Lighted Farm Implement Parade has been called "the NW's premier lighted parade." Taking place in early December, the parade includes "farm implements: combines, boom trucks, swathers, grape pickers, all types of tractors" decorated with colorful lights. The 2006 edition of the event had more than 70 parade entrants; the A&E network once named the event one of the "Top 10" such parades in the United States.
The parade was the first of its kind in the Yakima Valley. The Darigold Dairy Fair manufactures cheese, but was noted for its colorful facade and circus-like decorations, which included a pair of cows swinging on a flying trapeze; the Dairy Fair Store was shut down in 2012. Located downtown, the museum houses and displays artifacts and documents with a focus on daily life in Sunnyside during its early years; the building housing the museum was donated to the city by Robert and Martha McIntosh, who had purchased the business from the family of Walter C. Ball & Sons, the local undertaking business. Both were among the pioneering families that founded Sunnyside; the Sunnyside Memorial Cemetery, founded by the Ball Family, is located north of town. The lone structure at that location was designed by Percy Ball to resemble Chingford Church in Walthamstow, England where Walter C. Ball and his wife Amelia grew up together; this building was used to house the retort for cremations. The family plots of the Ball family are located on the east side of the structure.
Many of the original school buildings in Sunnyside, the town of Outlook just northwest of town, have either burned to the ground or been demolished to make way for bigger and better structures. One of the original structures still in use is the Lincoln School Building which sits at the intersection of Lincoln and Sixth Street. Erected in 1927, it is a two-storey structure with an adjacent gymnasium attached to the east wing of the building. In 1928, female teachers were not allowed to marry. Doing so would void their contract to teach; the land that Lincoln School sits on was donated to the school district by H. Lloyd Miller in 1926, he and his wife donated the land next to it between the school and 9th Ave. to be used for play fields for the students. Lincoln still remains as one of the oldest buildings in the school district, it has been renovated to accommodate the administrative offices for the district. Sunnyside High School was named a School of Distinction in 2015 and 2016. According to ESD105, "The Schools of Distinction Award goes to the top 5 percent of Washington schools that have attained the most outstanding levels of sustained improvement in English language arts and graduation rates among their student
Pullman is the largest city in Whitman County, located in southeastern Washington state within the Palouse region of the Pacific Northwest. The population was 29,799 at the 2010 census, estimated to have reached 31,682 in 2014. Incorporated as Three Forks, the city was renamed after industrialist George Pullman. Pullman is noted as a vastly fertile agricultural area known for its many miles of rolling hills and the production of wheat and legumes, it is home to Washington State University, a public research land-grant university, the international headquarters of Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories. Pullman is eight miles from Moscow, home to the University of Idaho, is served by the Pullman-Moscow Regional Airport. In 2011, Bloomberg Businessweek selected Pullman as the "Best Place to Raise Kids" in Washington. Factors included affordability, safety, a family-friendly lifestyle, the quality of Pullman High School, the presence of Washington State University, the natural environment of the area.
In 1876, about five years after European-American settlers established Whitman County on November 29, 1871, Bolin Farr arrived here. He camped at the confluence of Dry Flat Creek and Missouri Flat Creek on the bank of the Palouse River. Within the year, Dan McKenzie and William Ellsworth arrived to stake claims for adjoining land, they named the first post office here as Three Forks. In the spring of 1881, Orville Stewart opened a general store and Bolin Farr platted about 10 acres of his land for a town. Pullman was incorporated on April 1888 with a population of about 200 people, it was named Three Forks, after the three small rivers that converge there: Missouri Flat Creek, Dry Fork, the South Fork of the Palouse River. In 1884, Dan McKenzie and Charles Moore replatted the site and named it for American industrialist George Pullman. On March 28, 1890, the Washington State Legislature established the state's land grant college, but did not designate a location. Pullman leaders were determined to secure the new college and offered 160 acres of land for its campus.
Idaho Territory had established its land grant college in 1889. On April 18, 1891, the site selection commission appointed by Washington's governor chose Pullman. On January 13, 1892, the institution opened with 59 students under the name Washington Agricultural College and School of Science, it was renamed the State College of Washington in 1905, more known as "Washington State College," and became Washington State University in 1959. In 1961, Pullman became a non-chartered code city under the Mayor-Council form of government; the city has an elected mayor with an elected seven-member council and an appointed administrative officer, the city administrator. Pullman is situated across four major hills which divide the city into nearly equal quarters: these are Military Hill, north of the Palouse River and west of North Grand Avenue. Companies associated with an expanding high-tech industry are at the city's north end, anchored by Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories; the lab company was founded by Edmund Schweitzer, a Ph.
D. graduate of WSU. SEL and other firms are within the 107-acre Pullman Industrial Park, run by the Port of Whitman County; the WSU campus is on College Hill, part of the area is a historic district listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The historic character of College Hill is manifest in its many early-twentieth century craftsman-style bungalows and two streets which retain their original red brick paving. See Red Brick Roads of Pullman, Washington. College Hill is the location for Washington State University's Greek Row as well as home to several bars. Many students reside in this neighborhood making it a lively place to spend time with lots of activity during the weekend nights. Popular bars in The Coug and Valhalla. Stubblefields is known for its basement dance floor and three large bars; the Coug is popular as a sports bar, with signatures and pictures littered over every inch of wall space. Valhalla is close to Martin Stadium which makes it a busy place on football gamedays.
The Pullman School District consists of the following: Franklin Elementary school Jefferson Elementary school Sunnyside Elementary school Lincoln Middle School Pullman High SchoolThe city's only public high school, Pullman High School has about 700 students. It is on Military Hill, its mascot for its athletic teams is the greyhound. PHS offers honors and advanced placement courses, along with Running Start course work through WSU and area community colleges, such as Spokane Falls Community College. Pullman is the site of the largest and original campus of Washington State University, a member of the Pac-12 Conference in NCAA Division I. WSU is well known for its veterinary medicine, architecture, agriculture and communications schools. Pullman is at 46°43′59″N 117°10′19″W. At an elevation of 2,352 ft above sea level. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.88 square miles, all of it land. The water supply is a natural aquifer; the surrounding region, called the Palouse prairie, or the Palouse, is noteworthy for its fertile rolling hills where winter and spring wheat, barley and peas are grown.
Pullman's climate is classified as dry-summer humid continental, using the 0° threshold for mean col
Spokane Valley, Washington
Spokane Valley is a city in Spokane County, United States, the largest suburb of Spokane. It is located east of Spokane, west of Coeur d'Alene and surrounds the city of Millwood on three sides; the city incorporated as the City of Spokane Valley on March 31, 2003. The Washington State Office of Financial Management estimates the city’s population as 94,919 as of 2015. Spokane Valley is named after the valley of the Spokane River. Before becoming an incorporated city, the area was and still is referred to as "The Valley" by residents of the Spokane–Coeur d'Alene area; the city was formed from a merger of the unincorporated census-designated places of Dishman, Trentwood, Veradale, as well as the western section of the CDP of Greenacres. Unlike the other five towns, Millwood avoided becoming part of Spokane Valley by incorporating itself in 1927. For thousands of years, the Spokane Valley area was populated by members of the Upper Band of the Interior Salish Indians, calling themselves “Sn-tutuul-i”, the meaning of, not known.
In about 1783, fur traders from the North West Company began traveling through the area. They called these Indians the “Spokanes”, interpreted as meaning “Children of the Sun.” The Spokanes were a peaceful people, on friendly terms with neighboring tribes and the fur traders and missionaries who came to the area. They fished salmon, hunted game, ate camassia roots and berries they gathered. Despite their many years of acceptance of the white settlers, the calming influence of Chief Garry, the Spokanes protested the loss of their lands by joining in the Indian Rebellion of 1857; the final battle, in 1858, culminated in the Spokane Valley with the destruction of over 800 of their horses, their food, teepees. The Spokanes were forced from the lands of their ancestors to a reservation north of the Spokane River, just west of the Spokane area; the first permanent white settler in the Spokane Valley was a retired French-Canadian trapper, Antoine Plante, who built a small cabin near the Spokane River in 1849.
Plante ran a small Hudson's Bay Company trading post in the home he shared with his American Indian wife and family. In 1850, Plante constructed and operated the first ferry across the Spokane River, the only means of crossing the river in the area, it was used for transportation across the river by Fort Colville military personnel, U. S. Army surveyors, miners traveling to western Montana and southeastern British Columbia. In 1862, A. C. "Charley" Kendall established a store on the north side of the Spokane River. A bridge to cross the river at Kendall's store was soon built by Joe Herring, Timothy Lee, Ned Jordan in 1864. A small community, known as Spokane Bridge, began to build up near the bridge. M. M. Cowley took over the holdings of Charley Kendall in 1872, including the bridge, a trading post and a log hotel; the history of the settlement of the Spokane Valley predates the history of the city of Spokane, Washington. Spokane Valley holds many of the “firsts” for the Spokane area. In addition to being home to the area’s first settler, Antoine Plante, the Spokane Valley had the first business and first ferry in 1850.
All these firsts occurred before the 1873 arrival of James N. Glover, considered the founding father of Spokane. Before the turn of the century, early pioneers, many of them silver miners, arrived from the East by way of the Northern Pacific and Great Northern railroads, for which Spokane was a major hub. By 1883, the first transcontinental rail was established; the railroad activity created support for extensive facilities. Within a few years, Spokane was tied to the outside world by five transcontinental railroads, making it the hub of commerce it remains today. Irrigation efforts stimulated population growth in the Spokane Valley in the early part of the 20th century. Developers and real estate speculators tapped into nearby lakes, the Spokane River and the aquifer lying under the valley in an effort to turn the dry land into saleable agricultural land. In 1899, the Spokane Valley Land and Water Co. owned by long-time irrigation advocate D. C. Corbin, built a canal to irrigate land in the Greenacres area with water from Liberty Lake.
In 1905, the Spokane Canal Company built a canal to irrigate the Otis Orchard area with water from Newman Lake, Modern Irrigation and Land Company tapped into the underground aquifer to irrigate 3,000 acres in Opportunity. Within just twenty years, 30,000 acres of dry land was converted into fertile farmland. Water access increased land values. Valley population grew from 1,000 residents in 1900 to nearly 10,000 by 1922. Extensive apple orchards thrived in the gravelly soil of the Valley, by 1912 nearly 2 million apple trees had been planted. A huge packing plant was built in 1911 by the Spokane Valley Growers Union. With the exception of the incorporated Town of Millwood, the Spokane Valley was developed as townships with no governmental functions. Most of the townships platted in the early 1900s were surveyed as a tool for promotion and sales, remain as names for neighborhoods and post office designations today. A few Spokane Valley townships were developed for residential and/or business purposes.
Trent was platted as a residential area for Northern Pacific railroad workers in 1881, Millwood began as a “company town”, developed by Inland Empire Paper Mill for their employees, Dishman developed as a business center. All other Valley townships were developed as irrigation districts and owe their ex
The Tri-Cities are three tied cities – Kennewick and Richland – located at the confluence of the Yakima and Columbia Rivers in the Columbia Basin of Eastern Washington. Each city borders one-another, making the Tri-Cities seem like one uninterrupted mid-sized city; the three cities function as the center of the Tri-Cities metropolitan area, which consists of Franklin and Benton Counties. The Tri-Cities urban area consists of the city of West Richland, the CDPs of West Pasco and Finley, as well as the CDP of Burbank, despite the latter being located in the Walla Walla metropolitan area; the official 2016 estimate of MSA population of Tri-Cities is 283,846. This is over a 12% increase from 2010. 2017 estimates now show Tri-Cities as over 300,000. The combined population of the three major cities themselves was 193,567 at the 2010 Census; as of April 1, 2016, the Washington State Office of Financial Management, Forecasting Division estimates the cities as having a combined population of 217,430The Tri-Cities Airport located in Pasco provides the region with commercial and private air service.
Pasco is the seat of Franklin County. In 2010, Kiplinger rated the Tri-Cities among the Top 10 best places to raise a family, CNN/Money ranked the Tri-Cities one of the top 10 best bets for gains in housing value, due to its stable economic conditions since the early 2000s. Pasco was the first of the Tri-Cities to be incorporated, in 1891. Kennewick was incorporated in 1904, Richland followed in 1910. West Richland—a suburb of Richland, as well as the fourth largest city in the metropolitan area—was founded by dissatisfied residents of Richland, who wished to be home owners rather than renters of government-owned houses, after the arrival of Hanford. Despite attempts by Richland to annex the community, they remained separate and became incorporated in 1955. Pasco was the largest city in the Tri-Cities due to its railroad station, it had the most land for easy irrigation and farming and was still the largest up until the founding of Hanford near Richland. Farming was the basis of every sector of the economy in the early years.
Indeed, the area remained rural well into the 1940s. It did not have a daily radio station until the mid-1940s. Today, agriculture is a big part of the Tri-Cities, Pasco in particular. After the founding of the Hanford Site in 1943, Richland became the largest city of the three overnight. Richland's Columbia High School adopted "Bombers" as its mascot. In 1970, Kamiakin High School was founded in response to the continued influx of people; the economy continued to grow, but not without some turbulence. Every time the federal government cut funding at Hanford, thousands of talented, credentialed people would become jobless and leave for other jobs. During this time, other employers made their way into the area, but they too would be forced to cut jobs in the bad times. Since the 1970s, Kennewick has had the greatest population of the three cities; the Columbia Center Mall opened in 1969 on land newly incorporated into Kennewick, drawing growth to western Kennewick and south Richland. Completion of the Interstate 182 Bridge in 1984 made Pasco much more accessible, fueling the growth of that city.
With the end of the Cold War, many in the area feared a shutdown of Hanford, followed by the Tri-Cities becoming a ghost town. These fears were allayed after the United States Department of Energy switched the facility's purpose from the creation of nuclear weapons to the effective sealing and disposal of radioactive waste. During the 1990s, several major corporations entered the Tri-Cities, which helped to begin diversifying the economy apart from the Hanford sector. In 1995, a sixth public high school, Southridge High, was founded in south Kennewick; the 2000s saw continued rapid growth as the Hanford site hired hundreds of workers to help with the cleanup effort. Additionally, the Tri-Cities saw a large influx of retirees from various areas of the Northwest. During this time, the corresponding nationwide housing boom, all three cities flourished and grew significantly. Pasco became the fastest growing city in Washington. In 2005, the Census Bureau reported that Pasco's population had surpassed Richland's for the first time since pre-Hanford days.
Despite the economic recession of the late 2000s, the Tri-Cities area continued to maintain steady growth and a stable economic climate due in part to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 which directed funding and jobs to the Hanford site and its various cleanup efforts. The Tri-Cities are in a semi-arid climate, receiving an average of 5 to 7 inches of precipitation every year. Winds periodically exceed 30 mph. While there are an average 225 clear days every year, these are between April 1 and November 1. Temperatures range from as low as −10 °F in the winter to as high as 110 °F in the summer, reached 115 °F in July 2006; the region has received as much as 50 inches. Due to the semi-arid climate and subsequent large amounts of sand, a perpetual annoyance to residents is the amount of dust blown about by the frequent winds. Thanks to the aforementioned rivers, a large amount of cheap irrigation is available. Washington is the most northwest of the lower 48 states—consequently, the area is in the Pacific Standard Time Zone.
The Tri-Cities makes up the largest metropolitan area in the southeastern quadrant of Washington. The l