Now Richland is getting luxe waterfront apartments

First Pasco, now Richland.

Tri-City renters with a craving for waterfront living soon will be able to choose between apartments on either side of the Columbia River. 

Cedar and Sage Homes broke ground on Willow Pointe Apartments, a 126-unit “resort” style apartment complex at 250 Battelle Blvd. in north Richland in late July. It is next to the Willow Pointe townhome development.

Willow Pointe is billed as a resort-style development from builders who know resorts. Cedar and Sage, helmed by Dave Gintz, is based in Cle Elum, where it builds homes and multifamily projects at Suncadia resort.

The Richland project is one of two apartment complexes being built on the Columbia River.

The other is on the Pasco shoreline. Columbia River Walk will offer 288 units at 2120 W. A St., Pasco, near the blue bridge. The first 60-unit building is under construction.

Like Columbia River Walk, Willow Pointe is casting itself as a well-placed spot for renters who can afford great locations.

Jed Cazier, project manager for Willow Pointe, said preleasing could begin in six months with the first units available to renters in about a year.

Cazier said the property will boast resort amenities such as a pool, spa and clubhouse. It fronts the riverfront trail and some units will offer Columbia River views.

The north Richland location is the big selling point.

“This is about as close to the Hanford area as you can get,” he said. “If you work out there and you just want to be close to that and to the river, there’s no better place.”

Willow Pointe will consist of three, three-story buildings with daylight basement garages. The first building will have 30 units — 12 one-bed/one-bath units and 18 two-bed/two-bath units. Several will meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements for renters who are disabled.

Builders Capital provided the construction loan for the first building, which has a project value of about $6 million, according to a permit issued by the city of Richland.

Cazier said future buildings could have a different mix of unit types and sizes. It is designed with the potential to sell some units as condominiums in the future.

The project is being built on a site bought by Tacoma-based Weyerhauser Apartments, which paid $1.6 million for the undeveloped areas of the luxury Willow Point community in 2018.

The vacancy rate for Tri-City apartment rentals in the spring was a tight 2.5%, according to a biannual survey by the University of Washington’s Runstad Center for Real Estate Research. The average local monthly rent was $1,022.

The state vacancy rate was 4.2 percent and the state’s average rent was a little more than $1,500 a month.

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