Rezoning, permitting processes may take up to a year and include public comment periods
PULLMAN – After hearing public comments and discussing a preliminary site plan on Feb. 13, the Port of Whitman County Board of Commissioners authorized staff to submit an application to the City of Pullman to request rezoning of 88 acres on SW Old Wawawai Road to heavy industrial and commercial.
The rezoning would support development of an Agriculture Advancement Campus, including anchor tenant AgTech OS’ proposed biofuels facility. The facility would use local canola, solar energy, and recycled water to produce sustainable fuels.
Dr. Richard Parnas and Dr. Brian Kraft with AgTech OS attended today’s Commission meeting to share the company’s plans and address public and Commissioner questions, including questions about odor, emissions, water use, safety and more. Some of these questions are addressed on AgTech OS’ website: www.farmfuel.tech/faq. The Port has also launched a web page for this project, including an FAQ page, at www.portwhitman.com/ag-advancement-campus.
“The rezoning application is an early step and an important one to help us learn more. There are many more steps ahead of us, and maybe a year, before permits could be approved and anything could be built,” said Commission President Karl Webber. “We have really appreciated all the input from the community so far. We know there are questions and we’re committed to continuing to hear from and share information with everyone as this process continues.”
The Port expects to submit its rezoning application to the City of Pullman and begin the environmental permitting process by Feb. 28. Both the rezoning and permitting processes include opportunities for public input, likely in March or April.
The Port encourages those interested in the rezoning request and proposed campus to attend Commission meetings to learn more and continue to share their thoughts and questions. Port Commission meetings are generally held at 10 a.m. on the first and third Thursdays of the month at the Port’s Colfax office, located at 302 N. Mill Street, and virtually via Zoom. More information, including agendas and meeting links, is available on the Port’s website.
Learn about this project at www.portwhitman.com/ag-advancement-campus and sign up to receive information directly in your inbox by emailing email@example.com.
About the Agricultural Advancement Campus
The Port of Whitman County has made an offer to purchase 184 acres on SW Old Wawawai Road in Pullman for a proposed Agricultural Advancement Campus. The Port is currently in the negotiations and due diligence stage; the property purchase is not final.
The Port plans to apply for a zoning change for 88 acres to heavy industrial and commercial. The commercial portion of the property would act as a buffer between industrial operations and nearby Pullman residences.
If the rezone is approved, the Port intends to create a campus for businesses in the agricultural technology industry. Committed private partner and startup company AgTech OS would serve as the anchor tenant. AgTech plans to establish an approximately 550,000-square-foot biofuels facility that will convert a local rotation crop, canola, into sustainable fuels for agricultural operations. The timeline for facility construction once permits are approved is about 12 to 24 months, according to AgTech OS.
Learn more about this proposed facility at www.farmfuel.tech.
About the Port of Whitman County
The Port of Whitman County is dedicated to improving the quality of life for all citizens of Whitman County through industrial real estate development, preservation of multi-modal transportation, facilitation of economic development and provision of on-water recreational opportunities.