Introduction to Richland Agriculture, Industry, and Economy
The city of Richland Washington is a part of the Tri-Cities area in southeastern Washington. Richland is situated near the confluence of the Columbia and Yakima rivers. Falling within Benton County, the city is home to an estimated 43,500 people. Neighboring cities completing the Tri-Cities group are Pasco and Kennewick and occasionally, West Richland is also counted among the Tri-Cities area. Richland was originally a quiet and unremarkable agricultural community until the United States Army erected a massive base in the region. The base was established during the Second World War and covered an area roughly half the size of Rhode Island. It was built along the nearby Columbia River and used to house the workers on the Manhattan Project. The site where the work on the project was completed later became the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. This massive endeavor was responsible for a huge economic boom in the population of the previously tiny town: from 300 in the middle of the year 1943 to over 25,000 by the end of the Second World War. Of course, at that stage, it wasn’t a city in the conventional sense, but more a tightly controlled and secretive military compound. As a result of the economy, activity, and influx of personnel, the Richland WA Real Estate population climbed sharply from 1,500 to over 51,000 residents during the war years.
Richland Economy after the War
Following the war, the Richland population fell off as workers were relieved from their duties at what is now the Hanford site. However, with the escalation of tension between the US and Russia following the end of the war, work on weapons was continued at the nuclear facility. Thus the region’s population remained in the range of 27,000 people during the 50s. During the late 80s, the site was converted from weapons production to environmental reclamation and research. Clearly, the Richland economy has been primarily based around the Hanford site since the plant opened. Several other advanced research institutions that are staffed by Richland residents include the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory. A number of other high-tech facilities, businesses, and consulting services have developed economies in the region, such as a waste vitrification plant, a nuclear power reactor, and Lockheed Martin Services, Inc. to name but a few.
Richland's Agriculture Economy
Richland Washington is also a great site for agriculture. The Columbia Basin region has excellent conditions for the production of crops and a great many are grown in the land around Richland real estate and the Tri-Cities. Wheat is the most commonly found, although the region's economy has also acquired an excellent reputation for the quality of its wines. Over 17,000 acres of wine-producing grapes are to be found there. Indeed, the Columbia Basin is the most productive viticulture region in the US, second only to California’s Napa Valley. The beautiful wine estates also attract a great deal of tourism to the area. All this agriculture is made possible by the nearby Snake, Yakima, and Columbia Rivers which provide easy irrigation to farmers. The Tri-Cities are on track to further development, economy, and prosperity under the guidance of the Tri-City Industrial Development & Economy Council, which advances the cause of technological and agricultural industries throughout the region.