Major Tourism-Destination Project Planned for Washington’s Tri-Cities Area

Project slated to be developed in an ‘opportunity zone’ along the Columbia River in Pasco
Updated: Mon, 03/18/2019 - 10:10
 
 
  • Project slated to be developed in an ‘opportunity zone’ along the Columbia River in Pasco

Private developer Eaty Gourmet LLC is planning a phased culinary and entertainment development on a 52-acre site along the Columbia River in Pasco, Washington, with phase one of the project expected to break ground next year with a projected price tag of $52 million.

The greater Pasco area, including the site of the planned development, called Osprey Pointe, have been designated one of the state’s 139 opportunity zones, which is a new federal economic-development program designed to entice investment in low-income areas by offering tax incentives to investors. The Port of Pasco also has the authority to issue tax-exempt revenue bonds to help finance development projects.

The Osprey Pointe project will include a food and wine hall, a boutique hotel and a culinary-education center tied together with a waterfront courtyard plaza that will feature festivals, events and amphitheater concerts ― all with the goal of making the facility a destination entertainment venue. The site of the planned development is owned by the Port of Pasco, a municipal economic development corporation, which has signed an exclusive letter of intent with Eaty Gourmet, which expects to complete phase one of the project in 2022. The Port of Pasco oversees six development sites that include some 2 million square feet of office, industrial and warehouse space as well as property along the Colombia River, near the Paco airport or at industrial sites in the Pasco area.

Eaty Gourmet also has inked a memorandum of understanding with Washington State University Tri-Cities “to explore options for offering training and learning opportunities for businesses and the community at large,” the company announced. Eaty Gourmet was launched by Mitch Gilbert in 2016 with the goal of developing the 52-acre Osprey Pointe site. He has more than 25 years of sales, marketing and business-development experience with companies such as GE Capital, InfoSpace and Vanstar and also has been involved with his own startups previously ― Northern Professional and Grinders Hot Stands.

"The Port Commission has always believed that Osprey Pointe is a special place to create investment and opportunity in Pasco. The Eaty Gourmet group gets that,” Port Commission President Jean Ryckman says. “The vision they presented will accelerate revitalization and create national interest and prestige.”

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