Letter: Hanford Reach Interpretive Center's tours lack proper focus

March 26, 2013 

What are the people on the Hanford Reach Interpretive Center, Richland Public Facilities Board and Richland City Council thinking?

I found no mention of the Hanford Reach in any of the events outlined in the March 3 Herald article, "Reach center tours," though the proposed facility's title is "The Hanford Reach Interpretive Center" and the mission is to be the "Gateway to The National Monument." These organizations have forgotten the reason they exist!

"They (tours) fit with the Reach center's mission of education," according to the article. Who will the tour leaders educate with "Chasing the Floods: Wallula Gap" at $124 per person or $496 for a family of four? Wallula Gap? Really? Do they even know the location of the Hanford Reach? And the normally free Allied Arts Gallery tour is $50?

No wonder more than $15 million has been spent with nothing but unachievable designs, contracts to build the wrong facility in the wrong place, pie-in-the sky revenue projections and several staff jobs to prepare "tour catalogs" to show for it?

Why ignore the Department of Commerce report, which questions whether operating revenue can be achieved?

Why weren't prices in the March 6 Herald ad? "Hops to Bottle," $84 and "Red Mountain," $125.

If these "tours fit the mission of education," why do more than half feature wine or beer tasting?

This certainly isn't what I want from an interpretive center!

MART YOUNG, Richland

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