Picturesque Pasco farm is being sold to make way for over 600 waterfront homes and condos

Harris Farm occupies 45 picturesque acres on the Columbia River, on Pasco’s far western end.

Developers routinely contact the family trust that owns it, hoping to transform it into neighborhoods with sunset views over the river.

They’ve always been politely shut down.

Until now. Tri-City home builders are about to get a shot at Harris Farm, 11530 W. Court St.

The Harris Family Trust, which benefits the eight heirs of the late F. Wallace and Lucille M Harris, is selling the prime development site, which includes alfalfa fields, gardens, several homes and 450 feet of Columbia River shoreline.

Musser Bros. Auctions will auction the property in four parts on Nov. 14.

‘It’s time’ to sell

“It’s time,” said Lurene Harris Fleshman, the youngest of the eight Harris children.

Fleshman has lived on the property her entire life and raised her six children there as well, after telling her husband she was “non-relocatable” when they married.

She runs the Harris Farm produce stand with her daughter.

Her son rents property from the trust and is aided by his own son. The boy, 4, is the fifth generation of Harris to work the farm.

Fleshman said her oldest sister died a few years ago, which inspired the surviving siblings to want to simplify the family estate and split the assets among the surviving children and grandchildren.

Harris Farm on the Columbia River in western Pasco will be sold for residential development at a November auction. Courtesy Musser Bros. Auctions

Development won’t happen immediately. The winning bidder will have to honor the alfalfa lease for about a year.

Undeniable appeal

But the farm’s appeal to residential builders is undeniable.

It occupies a spot on the far western end of West Court Street, west of the I-182 bridge and opposite Richland’s Columbia Point.

The property is in an unincorporated Franklin County “doughnut hole.” It is engulfed by the city of Pasco on three sides, making it an obvious candidate for annexation.

The city agrees, adding it to its masterplan for the massive Broadmoor redevelopment area west of Road 100.

Broadmoor will play a big role in absorbing the 50,000 new residents anticipated by 2040.

Harris Farm, a 45-acre property on the Columbia River in far western Pasco, will be sold for residential development at a November Auction. Courtesy Musser Bros. Auctions

Water and sewer service are already in place, making the site “shovel ready” for developers once zoning and permits are sorted out, according to auctioneer Scott Musser.

“This, indisputably, is the most prized piece of residential development ground I’ve had the privilege of offering in my 37-year career,” he said.

The zoning proposed by the city allows up to eight units per acre at the low end and 15 at the high end.

If the entire property were developed at the maximum density, it would add 675 homes to western Pasco.

The actual figure will likely be lower if the winning bidder opts for a mix of single-family homes, townhomes, apartments and condominiums.

There is no reserve price, but the final sale is subject to approval by the trust. At $100,000 an acre, it could fetch $4.5 million.

Musser Bros. will sell Harris Farm in four parcels.

  • .84-acre riverfront lot with a single-family home and 195 feet of riverfront.
  • .42-acre lot with a single-family home and 100 feet of riverfront.
  • 20 acres, including a .91-acre riverfront lot with 150 feet of shoreline plus a home.
  • 23 acre lot.

The auction begins at 2 p.m. Nov. 14 at Musser Auction, 3125 Rickenbacker Drive, Pasco. Visit pascoauction.com for auction details and conditions.

Wendy Culverwell writes about local government and politics, focusing on how those decisions affect your life. She also covers key business and economic development changes that shape our community. Her restaurant column and health inspection reports are reader favorites. She’s been a news reporter in Washington and Oregon for 25 years.