The Hermiston City Council will consider actions on Monday that will pave the way for two major projects in Hermiston — a new water tower and a new chamber of commerce building.

During Monday’s city council meeting the council will consider rezoning a 2-acre parcel of property on the southeast corner of South Highway 395 and East Evelyn Avenue, across from New Hope Community Church.

The chamber was awarded $1 million by the Oregon Legislature in 2018 to build new offices and workforce development space. According to a memo by city planner Clint Spencer in the council’s agenda packet, the chamber has requested the Evelyn Avenue property be rezoned from multi-family residential to outlying commercial, and plans to purchase the property and build a facility there if the rezone is approved.

Monday’s meeting will include a public hearing on the issue.

On Monday, the city will also consider awarding a $3.3 million contract to Premier Excavation of Pasco for construction of a new water tower.

The 1 million-gallon steel tank will be located at the intersection of Punkin Center Road and Northeast 10th Street. It will also include 2 miles of new water mains and major improvements to the Alora Heights booster pump station.

The project will provide adequate water for housing development to more than 300 acres in the northeast part of Hermiston.

According to the city it will also serve the property at the intersection of Northeast 10th Street and Theater Lane, where Hermiston School District hopes to one day build an elementary school, saving the district up to $2 million in development costs.

Umatilla County is contributing $2 million to the project using the first four years of payments in lieu of taxes from Lamb Weston’s new expansion in the city of Hermiston’s enterprise zone. The city will also use its half of the payments to cover the rest of the water project’s costs.

The council will also hold a public hearing on Monday on a request from the Hermiston School District and Hermiston Irrigation District to annex land off Theater Lane — 19 acres held by the school district and 51 acres by the irrigation district — into the land. The property is currently undeveloped.

The city council meets at 7 p.m. at city hall, 180 N.E. Second St. Visit for the full agenda packet.

An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the specific location of the proposed Hermiston Chamber of Commerce property.


Reporter covering city government and economic development in Hermiston, Umatilla, Stanfield and Echo.

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