Real Estate & Construction Briefs – November 2021

Kadlec kicks in $25K for Little Badger trail, $100K is still needed

The Kadlec Foundation donated $25,000 to Friends of Badger Mountain to support its effort to establish a new preserve and trail on Little Badger Mountain.

The nonprofit is raising money to close on the purchase of land it needs to create its third trail. Little Badger Mountain Preserve and Trail will connect to the Badger Mountain Centennial network of trails on neighboring Badger Mountain.

Friends of Badger Mountain established Badger Mountain Centennial Preserve in 2005 and Candy Mountain Preserve in 2016. Collectively, it has preserved 900 acres of ridge land and built 10 miles of trails, which are among the most hiked in the region.

“The mission of the Kadlec Foundation is to elevate community health through the generous support of donors,” said Jim Hall, Kadlec’s chief philanthropy officer.

The Little Badger trail will add a 2.2-mile trail, rising to the summit of Little Badger in south Richland. As of early November, Friends of Badger Mountain still needed to raise about $100,000 of its $1.5 million goal. It hopes to close the fundraising campaign by the end of 2021.

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Richland Players buying 627 square feet of land

Richland Players Inc., which owns the theater at 608 The Parkway, is buying 627 square feet of neighboring property from the city of Richland.

The city agreed to sell the sliver of land after the theater mistakenly located a portion of a storage building on city-owned land next door.

Richland Players bought the storage building from the Richland School District in 1993. The boundary issue went undetected at the time, according to a summary prepared for the Richland City Council in November.

The sale price of $1,536.15 represents fair market value for the 627 square feet, estimated at $2.45 per square foot. Following the sale, the boundary line will be moved three feet south of the storage building.

Pasco middle school teacher gets free mortgage

Envoy Mortgage recently surprised Henry Ney of Pasco, a middle school math and science teacher, with a free monthly payment.

Envoy honored Ney through its Gift of Home program, which is designed to show gratitude to its customers during financially challenging times.

It said it honored Ney for his dedication to his students and his work throughout the pandemic to ensure his students did not fall behind.

“Facing many technical hurdles, Henry had to get creative to keep his students engaged and encouraged to learn while teaching remotely,” it said.

Town Crier announces plans to close on Nov. 24

A longtime Richland bar has announced plans to close before Thanksgiving.

The Town Crier said it intends to close its doors on Nov. 24, the day before the holiday.

The tavern’s Facebook announcement was shared more than 300 times on the social media site.

“They say that all great things must come to an end. After decades in business, including 18 years with the current owners, the time has come to call it a night,” the post read.

“We hope you will stop in during the next few weeks and say goodbye to our amazing staff.”

The tavern is at 1319 George Washington Way in the Richland Uptown Shopping Center.

West Richland’s Paradise Way extension delayed

 The city of West Richland’s plans to punch Paradise Way through to Van Giesen Street at the bottom of the hill have been delayed until spring.

The road extension project was to be completed in November but now it’s postponed to April, said Roscoe Slade III, the city’s public works director.

A development underway on either side of the Paradise near Van Giesen means the new road would have scrapers moving across the new pavement and the city would have to pay for traffic control.

The city’s contractor agreed to stop the project early and finish it up in the spring without charging the city extra.

“It was kind of a win for everybody. That’ll be a great connection. And that connection does not just go down to Van Giesen but also goes west across Van Giesen and ties back into Keene Road right where all that development is happening in the Heights at Red Mountain,” Slade said.

BrandCraft expands  to Boise through acquisition

BrandCraft, a Richland-based digital marketing, web design and creative agency, is expanding into Idaho through the acquisition of Carew Co.

BrandCraft also has a location in Spokane.

Carew founder Paul Carew will serve as enterprise creative director in the Boise area. He established his own firm about 10 years ago after first moving to Boise to work for a different agency. He helped establish the Idaho chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Artists and serves as an adjunct professor at Boise State University and on the board of the Better Business Bureau.

His team includes designers Thomas Walsh and Shailey Katsilometes who will round out the Boise office. At least one additional hire is planned.

“The Boise market is being added at the right time. I still see big demand in the Pacific Northwest. We look forward to continuing to building relationships within the Boise community,” said Torey Azure, CEO, BrandCraft.

 The firm recently moved its Tri-City offices from Kennewick to 723 The Parkway, Suite 203, in Richland.

BrandCraft offers video production and performance digital marketing among a few others. The larger team also increases production capabilities for design projects without sacrificing strategic design direction.

Downtown Kennewick is certifiably creative

Downtown Kennewick is the home of one of Washington’s newest certified creative districts, a designation that reflects the history and culture of the area.

The South Columbia Creative District (SOCO) was unanimously ratified on
Oct. 6 in a vote by a board of commissioners organized under ArtsWA.

The creative district program helps communities turn cultural activities into economic growth. For Kennewick, the designation recognizes that downtown is the creative and artistic heart of the community. The city of Kennewick and the Washington Department of Transportation will install highway signs promoting the South Columbia Creative District to alert passing travelers. 

The district is bordered by the Columbia River, Sixth Avenue, Gum Street and Fruitland Street. The area is home to Keewaydin Park, home of the East Benton County History Museum and Keewaydin branch of the Mid-Columbia Libraries, the Historic Downtown Kennewick business core, Columbia Gardens Urban Wine and Artisan Village, the Columbia Drive corridor and Clover Island. 

 “It was important to us that this creative district span the breadth of all of downtown’s major assets. That they encompass the essential creative, artistic, culinary, and historic features of our community,” said Stephanie Button, executive director of the Historic Downtown Kennewick Partnership, which will administer the district.

Yakama Nation buys 1,500-acre Inaba Produce Farms

The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation purchased a 1,500-acre farm within the reservation as part of its food sovereignty initiative.

The Yakama Nation acquired Inaba Produce Farms Inc. from the heirs of Shukichi Inaba, who immigrated from Japan to Wapato in 1907 and leased land from the tribe for his farm. The tribe noted that U.S. law did not allow Japanese immigrants to own land at the time.

Inaba cleared the original 120 acres of land and the farm eventually grew to its current size.

Brothers Lon and Wayne Inaba will remain as general manager and deputy manager.

The sale helps the Yakama Nation initiate an agriculture plan to support its goal of “food sovereignty,” to ensure members have access to healthy foods as well as employment and economic opportunities.

The general council adopted the agriculture plan in 2019.

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