City begins annexation on property with wetlands

By on Wednesday, November 24th, 2021 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

HERMISTON – The Hermiston City Council has begun the annexation process for 12.86 acres of land on the south side of East Elm Avenue north of East Jennie Avenue. The land in question had been zoned open space due to the existence of the Baker’s Pond wetland area.

The city agreed to conduct detailed mapping of the area to ascertain exactly how much is wetland, and only half an acre qualified.

“In exchange for that, the property owner agreed to transfer to the city about 3.5 acres so that we could expand our public works yard,” Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan said.

That would leave owner Robert Casteel with about nine acres of developable property.

“Part of it will be commercial that fronts onto Elm and then the balance would be zoned as residential,” Morgan said. “The property owner has strong interest in developing the southern acreage immediately as residential and then they would retain that acreage that fronts onto Elm for future commercial development.”