Pasco to put as many as 400 homes near Road 68

Pasco to put as many as 400 homes near Road 68 »Play Video
PASCO, Wash. -- Pasco is set to develop almost 300 acres of land near Road 68.

It's currently farmland south of the freeway. The state budget is forcing the Department of Natural Resources to auction the land off, and hundreds of homes could go there instead.

Kathy Noggles moved to West Pasco almost thirty years ago.

"We put the whole place in," she said. "It was nothing but sagebrush when we started out here."

Now, three decades of expansion later, one of the longest-standing pieces of untouched farm land in the city will be going through some major changes.

Washington wants to sell off land around the state. That includes 300 acres south of Interstate 182 between Road 68 and Road 100. Pasco jumped on the idea and is ready to help developers put in as many as 400 homes and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial space.

Neighbors like Kathy who live across the street are worried about traffic.

"I have less problem with the commercial aspect of it as so much housing," Kathy said. "With all the housing being up there, you're going to have a lot more traffic and a lot more, as far as I'm concerned, possibilities for crime."

As it stands now, Chapel Hill Boulevard turns into a gravel road right after it intersects with Road 68. But if the plans went through, it would become a main thoroughfare through neighborhoods and businesses.

The city plans to connect utilities and let private contractors build the homes. Even though they've been working on surveys to put in an overpass at Road 76, they say that's the last thing to go in.

"The freeway system is very complicated because it involves coordination through the state of Washington and the federal government and the cost is very prohibitive," said Pasco Planning Director Rick White.

Once the land is auctioned a year from now, development could start within a year.

Kathy says she didn't think the city would make it this far out.

"There's always going to be change and expansion. There's no way we can stop it," she says.

Pasco School District already owns about 25 acres near there. It's unclear whether they will pursue building another school there or trade the developer for land elsewhere.

The land will be appraised over the next six months.