City of prosser

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Consolidated Comprehensive Plan
City of Prosser, Washington


May 3, 2018

Previous Plan Adopted

December 20, 2007


November 10, 2009


April 5, 2011


June 24, 2014

This Plan adopted June 24, 2014


Consolidated Comprehensive Plan

May 27, 2014





Mayor Paul Warden



Rachel Shaw, City Clerk



Howard Saxton, City Attorney




Consolidated Comprehensive Plan

November 10, 2009

City of Prosser, Washington
Paul Warden
City Council:
Don Aubrey

Morgan Everett

Marvin Ward

Bob Elder

Randy Taylor

Steven Becken

Scott Hamilton
Planning Commission:
Glenda Schmidt

Trevor Day

Rob Siemens

Dorothy Evans

Jeremy Lynn

Sam Fitch

Devina Riojas
City Administration Support for Comprehensive Planning:
Paul Warden, Mayor

L.J. Dacorsi, Public Works Director

Howard Saxton, City Attorney

Barry Morrow, Building Official

Steve Zetz, Planning Director

Rachel Shaw, City Clerk

Regina Mauras, Finance Director

David Giles, Police Chief

Planning Consultant:
Anchor QEA/Parametrix

Table of Contents

Chapter VII

Chapter VIII


List of Figures

Figure 1A: Potential Additions to the UGA………………………………………………………………...24

Figure 1: Map of Urban Growth Boundaries 29

Figure 2: Comprehensive Plan Future Land Use Map 37

Figure 3 Airport Clear Zones 44

Figure 4: Map of Generalized Critical Areas 57

Figure 5: Distribution of Existing Land Uses 58

Figure 6: Existing Uses Compared to Planning and Zoning 58

Figure 7: Map of Existing Land Uses 60

Figure 8: Population Growth 61

Figure 9: Forecasted Population Growth 64

Figure 10: Housing Condition or Quality 75

Figure 11: Map of Street System and Classifications 90

Figure 12: Parks Plan 122

List of Tables

Table 1: Existing Land Uses 58

Table 2: Existing Use compared to Planed Uses 58

Table 3: Prosser Decennial Population 61

Table 4: Population Growth 1991-2006 61

Table 5: City of Prosser Population Capacity 62

Table 6: 2003 population Forecasts 63

Table 7:Housing Tenure 73

Table 8: Age of Housing Stock 73

Table 9: Size of Household 73

Table 10: Affordability of Rental Housing 74

Table 11: Housing Quality 74

Table 12: Inventory of State Owned Transportation Facilities 91

Table 13: Level of Service Criteria for non-signalized Intersections 92

Table 14: Level of Service for Average Weekday Traffic on Two Lane Roads and Streets 94

Table 15: Level of Service for Average Weekday Traffic with Turn Lanes at Intersections 94

Table 16: Projected Traffic Volumes and Level of Service: 2003-2023 96

Table 17: Project LOS on City Streets from 2006-2025 Regional Plan 97

Table 18: Current Benton Franklin Council of Governments Traffic Counts on City Streets 97

Table 19: Trend Analysis of Downtown Street 98

Table 20: Analysis of Future LOS on Downtown Streets 99

Table 21: 2006-2025 RTP Project Plan 100

Table 22: Place of Work of Prosser Residents 111

Table 23: Educational Level of Prosser Residents 111

Table 24: Type of Employments of Prosser Residents 112

Table 25: Occupation of Prosser Residents 112

Table 26: Inventory of Existing Parks Compared to National Park Standards 126

Policy References

By order of Text
Land Use Element
LU – General Land Use

LD – Distribution, location, intensities and densities of land use

RU – Residential Land Use

DT -- Downtown Area Land Use Policies

IH -- Industrial/Highway Land Use

AP -- Airport Land Use Policies

PH -- Phasing and Financing of Development

MN -- Monitoring

EV – General Environmental Management

BA -- Best Available Science

SH -- Shoreline Management

NR -- Natural Resource Areas

SW -- Storm and Surface Water management
Housing Element
HH -- Housing Policies

HP -- Housing Goals, Policies, and Strategies

Transportation Element
TD -- Transportation Design Policies

TR -- Regional Transportation Policies

TP -- Transportation Planning Policies

TC -- Transportation Concurrency

TM -- Multi-Modal Policies

PK -- Parking Policies

TE --Transportation Environmental Policies

TU -- Transportation and Land Use

TF -- Transportation Finance

TA -- Transportation Access

Utilities Element
UP -- Utility Policies

WG -- Water Goals and Policies

WP -- Wellhead Protection

SW -- Wastewater Disposal

Economic Development Element
ED -- Economic Development
Community Facilities Element
MB -- Municipal Buildings Goals and Policies

SH -- School Goals and Policies

EF -- Regional Coordination of Essential Public Facilities

CR -- Cultural Resources

PR -- Park and Recreation Goals and Policies

OS -- Open Space Goals and Policies

Capital Facilities Element
CF -- Capital Facility Policies

LOS -- Level of Service Policies

Vicinity Map


On November 10, 2009, the City of Prosser City Council adopted amendments to the City of Prosser Consolidated Comprehensive Plan. These amendments were recommended by the City of Prosser Planning Commission after two years of study and analysis. This document incorporates these amendments.

The entire comprehensive plan is the result of fifteen years of planning by the city as summarized below:

  • The state legislature adopted the Growth management Act (GMA) in the early 1990s. This act required the City of Prosser to adopt a comprehensive plan that complied with the provisions of the act.

  • The City adopted a comprehensive plan pursuant to the GMA in 1996. The plan adopted in 1996 still comprises the base of this document

  • A series of amendments to this plan was adopted by the City in various years. However, most of these amendments were not integrated with the text adopted in 1996 and the City’s plan was located in several different planning documents.

  • Between 1990 and 2006, the state legislature amended the GMA several times. These amendments required cities to review their comprehensive plans to ensure that their plans were up-to-date and compliant with the amendments made to the GMA since its original adoption.

  • The city completed a review and update of its planning program in 2007 to comply with amendments to the GMA and to consolidate various planning documents into one document. This update resulted in the adoption of the Consolidated Comprehensive Plan in December of 2007. This consolidated plan replaced and superseded all of the previous planning documents.
  • After the adoption of the 2007 update, the City held a Joint Council/Planning Commission meeting on February 5, 2008 to review the comprehensive plan and to provide direction to follow-up on issues that surfaced during the update process.

  • As a result of the joint meeting, in 2008 the City employed a planning consultant (Dugan Planning Services) to conduct a series of land use studies with Planning Commission to ensure that the Consolidated Comprehensive Plan adequately met city needs.

  • These studies resulted in amendments to the comprehensive plan that was updated in 2007. These amendments are now incorporated into this document.

Chapter I
There are choices confronting the City of Prosser that could alter the area's character. This Comprehensive Plan for the City of Prosser is a method of deciding between the available choices, and of bringing about the sorts of changes Prosser area residents want. The plan rests on the belief that it is wise to look ahead, foresee change, and take charge of the future. It covers decisions regarding Prosser's growth that are best made in common. These decisions include the following planning concerns: the overall land use pattern, how to serve the area with adequate housing and community facilities (such as streets, sewer, and water), and how to protect natural resources.

The Comprehensive Plan is a decision-making tool. It is a broad statement of community goals and policies that direct the orderly and coordinated physical development of the city. The plan anticipates change and provides specific guidance for approval of rezones, subdivisions, and the development of the city. It reflects the results of citizen involvement, technical analysis, and recommendations of the Planning Commission and adoption by the City of Prosser. The plan reflects the needs of the community’s residents for a safe and secure place to live, an economy that provides jobs, ways to travel, schools, and recreation opportunities.

A comprehensive plan not only responds to the needs of the community’s residents. It must also respond to the requirements of the Growth Management Act.
The City of Prosser’s Comprehensive Plan, its text and maps, includes goals and policies that will provide guidance for public and private decision-makers. This plan provides the basis for the designation of land use, for infrastructure development, and for implementing community services. This plan is written for a planning period of twenty years with periodic updates and an annual review of capital projects.
This Comprehensive Plan Document consolidates, and upon adoption, will supersede the 1996 City of Prosser Comprehensive Plan (as amended in 2000, 2001, and 2004) as the policy document of the comprehensive plan. While all policies in the previous editions and amendments of the plan are superseded by this document, these previous documents are incorporated herein by reference as resource and background materials. Since most of the policies in this document are policies that were first adopted in earlier versions of the plan, these documents contain information and analysis that were used in developing the policies of this plan.

Chapter II


In response to legislative findings that uncoordinated growth together with a lack of common goals toward land conservation poses a threat to the public health, safety, and general welfare, and especially to the environment and sustainable economic development, the state legislature enacted the Growth Management Act (GMA). To guide the development of comprehensive plans and land use regulations for those municipalities and counties to which the act applies, the GMA establishes the following goals (as quoted from (RCW 36.070.020):

  • Urban growth. Encourage development in urban areas where adequate public facilities and services exist or can be provided in an efficient manner.

  • Sprawl. Reduce the inappropriate conversion of undeveloped land into sprawling, low-density development.

  • Transportation. Encourage efficient, multi-modal transportation systems that are based on regional priorities and coordinated with county and city comprehensive plans.

  • Housing. Encourage the availability of affordable housing to all economic segments of the population of this state, promote a variety of residential densities and housing types, and encourage preservation of existing housing stock.

  • Economic Development. Encourage economic development throughout the state that is consistent with adopted comprehensive plans, promote economic opportunity for all citizens of this state, especially for unemployed and for disadvantaged persons, and encourage growth in areas experiencing insufficient economic growth, all within the capacities of the state's natural resources, public services, and public facilities.

  • Property Rights. Property rights shall not be taken for public use without just compensation having been made. The property rights of land owners shall be protected from arbitrary and discriminatory actions.

  • Permits. Applications for both state and local government permits should be processed in a timely and fair manner to ensure predictability.

  • Natural Resource Industries. Maintain and enhance natural resource-based industries, including productive timber, agricultural, and fisheries industries.

Encourage the conservation of productive forest lands and productive agricultural lands, and discourage incompatible uses.

  • Open Space and Recreation. Encourage the retention of open space and development of recreational opportunities, conserve fish and wildlife habitat, increase access to natural resource lands and water, and develop parks.

  • Environment. Protect the environment and enhance the state's high quality of life, including air and water quality, and the availability of water.

  • Citizen Participation. Encourage the involvement of citizens in the planning process and ensure coordination between communities and jurisdictions to reconcile conflicts.

  • Public Facilities and Services. Ensure that public facilities and services necessary to support development shall be adequate to serve the development at the time the development is available for occupancy and use without decreasing current service levels below locally established minimum standards.

  • Historic Preservation. Identify and encourage the preservation of lands, sites, and structures that have historical or archaeological significance.

One of the most important tenets of the GMA is consistency, meaning consistency between:

  • comprehensive plans and the planning goals identified in RCW 36.70A.020

  • municipal and county comprehensive plans,

  • the comprehensive plans of each municipality and county with those of neighboring municipalities and counties,

  • the elements within comprehensive plan (internal consistency),

  • the comprehensive plan and development regulations,

  • the comprehensive plan and capital budgets,
  • state agency actions and municipal and county comprehensive plans

This "consistency doctrine" has its beginnings in the State Planning Enabling Act of 1935 (there they say "in accordance with" instead of "consistent with"), and has been continually strengthened by state statutes and court decisions.

A second tenet of the GMA is concurrency, meaning that public facilities and services must be developed concurrently with the new land uses they are intended to serve, so that adopted level of service standards are consistently maintained. Regarding transportation, the concurrency requirement is especially forceful:
...local jurisdictions must adopt and enforce ordinances which prohibit development approval if the development causes the level of decline below the standards adopted in the...comprehensive plan, unless transportation improvements or strategies to accommodate the impacts of development are made concurrent with the development.
Taken together, the various requirements of GMA suggest a strong relationship between urban growth and the public facilities and services necessary to serve that growth. This relationship is further enhanced by the concept of Urban Growth Areas, wherein land development and public infrastructure improvements are programmed concurrently. To accomplish these new planning requirements, the GMA expressly authorized the use of innovative techniques, including impact fees.
Chapter III
An effective comprehensive plan is responsive to a community Vision. The original comprehensive plan contained vision statements that guided the formulation of that plan’s goals and policies. This vision then evolved through subsequent other community planning processes. Today the City has three different adopted vision statements.

While these vision statements are different, focusing on different aspects of the community or having different levels of detail, each statement expresses a consistent view of the community and its role in the region. All three statements are incorporated in this plan to guide the plan and its goals and policies.

1996 Vision Statement
Upon entering Prosser, one is struck by its peaceful, pastoral setting. The quaint downtown, and well-kept homes and businesses, are surrounded by green, thriving agricultural fields. The setting is rural, with a comfortable "small town" atmosphere. The people are neighborly.
As Prosser contemplates its future in light of the Growth Management Act, many challenges and opportunities become apparent. First, growth and development threaten the City's "small town" charm which makes it an attractive place to live. However, if growth and development are properly managed, the City can enjoy economic, employment, and population growth while retaining its peaceful, rural characteristics.
With this in mind, the City's land use goals and policies encourage the infill of currently vacant land, and the more efficient use of underdeveloped land. The City also desires to preserve open space and agricultural uses, create more parks, and retain the natural topography. To enhance the City's appearance and to promote livable spaces, new development should be compatible with adjacent uses and existing development, and should be appropriate in size and scale. The City intends to limit urban sprawl not only through regulations and policies, but through controlling the timing and direction of infrastructure expansion.
The City also desires to strengthen existing neighborhoods, and promote active neighborhood communities. To this end, the City promotes detached, single-family dwellings that are attractive, and compatible in size, style and scale with other homes in the neighborhood. The City also wants to ensure that housing is available for persons of all income levels, for seniors, and for those with special needs.

In regards to transportation, the City desires to maintain and/or enhance the City's excellent transportation access. The airport, truck routes, proximity of rail, and proximity to highways makes Prosser an attractive place for economic investment and development. However, the City also wants to decrease the impacts of single occupancy vehicles by encouraging bike and pedestrian routes, encouraging the use of public transportation, and encouraging pedestrian-friendly development.

Finally, Prosser desires to have a strong, healthy local economy. The activities of the City's current food processing industries should be encouraged as they provide jobs and tax base, while promoting the area's agricultural legacy. The City wants attractive clean, low-impact industries that will create economic prosperity without negatively impacting the City's environment and peaceful, rural character
2004 Comprehensive Plan Vision:
Prosser is a growing and progressive community characterized by its well-kept homes and businesses surrounded by green, thriving fields. The setting is rural with a comfortable “small town” atmosphere. The people are friendly and prosperous. The airport, truck routes, and proximity of rail and highways have made Prosser an attractive place for economic investment and development. The city enjoys pedestrian friendly development and is easy to move around in with readily accessible bike and pedestrian routes. Prosser has attractive low-impact industries and has created prosperity without negatively impacting the City’s environment and peaceful character.”
Community Vision (September 2004)
Adopted Vision Statement

Seven Main Vision Statement Elements:

The City of Prosser will be a progressive community, which will strive to achieve and maintain the following future character and standards:

  1. Prosser is a culturally diverse community that welcomes others and encourages respect and understanding for all.

  • Stated as the "Golden Rule" of living.

  • Prosser is a community with our own leadership and development program.

  1. Citizens have pride in their community.

  • Prosser has no weeds and presents a clean appearance.

  1. Citizens work together as a community team, both internally and externally.

  1. Prosser is a community with partnerships, churches, enthusiastic volunteers and service organizations.

  1. Prosser has retained our small town sense.

  • Prosser does not strive to be overpopulated to achieve its future goals.

  • Prosser is an affordable community.

  • Prosser has low and moderate income housing.

  • Has fewer taxes.

  • Prosser has an excellent Police force with more officers, who are approachable, personable and who walk street beats and are highly visible to keep the citizens safe

  • Prosser has a new Police facility.

  • Prosser employees are paid average or better to retain them and we keep public works and police officers.

  1. Prosser is a community with a defined and developed theme and a personality,

  • Prosser is a "tree city" in a desert with an active "tree" committee.

  • Has more trees, "cut one, replace with two."

  • Trees are pruned correctly.
  • Prosser has "curb appeal" along the entrances to our community.

  • Trees, businesses, sidewalks, curbs.

  • More flowers.

  • Streets are in top notch condition with good intersections.

  • 6th and 7th streets are one way.

  • Prosser has no weeds and presents a clean appearance.

  • There is uniform lighting downtown.

  • Has clean parks and flowers hanging from light poles.

  • Has a program that encourages home improvement.

  • Has grants and incentives for businesses to enhance appearance and recruit more business.

  • There is a group to assist small businesses.

  • Prosser offers seed money to help businesses improve.

  • Prosser has developed into the kind of town to fit the industries that we want.

  • With adequate state of the art waste facilities, industry and staff.

  • The RR now bypasses our community

    • The RR has been put in a tunnel so it doesn't create bottlenecks.

  1. Prosser is a "Destination Community" based on the following desired and achievable attributes:

  1. For Active Cultural Arts:

  • Prosser has preserved our history and has museums, tours, and education.

    1. Prosser has a new expanded destination library.

    2. Has free concerts in the park.

    3. Prosser has a week-long annual event, an amphitheatre and music.

    4. Has many events and facilities to accommodate them.
    5. Has public access television.

  • Prosser is the center for the cultural arts, performing and visual.

    1. Has a community / high school; performing arts facility.

    2. The Princess theatre provides plays, movies and a casino.

    3. Has a student theatre.

  1. For Tourism:

  • Prosser is bustling with people and tourists.

  • Tours come to Prosser.

  • Prosser is pedestrian friendly.

  • There is plenty of off street parking.

  • The Clore Center is complete and has meeting rooms.

  • The City, PEDA, and agricultural interests to promote the WSU research facility.

  • A downtown pedestrian mall.

  • A casino.

  • A golf` course.

  • Prosser has implemented a downtown marketing plan.

  • Prosser's downtown has been revitalized.

  • Prosser has completed the '97 downtown revitalization.

  • Prosser has second story deluxe apartments.

  • Has boutique hotels that support the wine and agricultural industry.

  • Prosser has bigger shopping district with a mall, more businesses and restaurants.

  1. For Recreation / Sports:

  • Citywide trail system that also runs along the river. Connected to surrounding communities.

  • Has a clean river

  • Citizens and visitors use the trail system to ride bicycles and walk

  • Prosser has sporting events.

  • Prosser has sports complex.

  • Has more parks and recreation activities.

  • Prosser to have an expanded activities center with a pool, meeting rooms, library, physical therapy, youth activities, sports complex, education and recreation.

  • Prosser to have a state of the art aquatic center that serves all ages and needs.

  • A youth facility center — skating.

  1. For Sustainable Employment:

  • Prosser has plenty of jobs that help keep our graduates in the community.

  • Prosser has developed into the kind of town to fit the industries that we want.

  • Prosser has built the kind of town to fit the businesses and industries desired.

  • Have grants and incentives for businesses to enhance appearance and recruit more business.

  • Prosser provides incentives for businesses to hire local people.

  • Agricultural support.

  • Has infrastructure to support agriculture.

  • Prosser has businesses that are competitive with other areas, such as Sunnyside, business.

  • Has a community marketing plan that encourages our community to shop locally and not elsewhere.

  • Prosser's business district has expanded.

  • Has larger businesses.

  • Prosser has attracted a grocery store.

  1. For Retirement:

  • Prosser has additional assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and senior residences.

  1. For Education:

  • Prosser schools have attained outstanding achievements academically.

  • Prosser has better school facilities with state of the art backbone, science and technology.

  • Schools have outstanding art, music programs K-12.

  • Community supports the Prosser Scholarship Program.

  • Housel Middle School is prepared for any emergency.

  • Has diversified vocational programs.

  • A community college has a satellite facility in Prosser.

  • Has diversified vocational programs.

  • The City, PEDA and agricultural interests to promote the WSU research facility.

  1. For Health Care and Services:

  • Prosser has additional assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and senior residences.

  • Prosserites to experience a state of the art medical opportunity, expanded; birth to beyond.

Chapter IV
County–wide Planning Policies

The Growth Management Act (GMA) requires that counties adopt countywide planning policies in cooperation with their municipalities. Countywide planning policies are written policy statements used solely for establishing a countywide framework from which county and city comprehensive plans are developed and adopted. This framework will ensure that city and county comprehensive plans are consistent as required by the Growth Management Act. However, it is important that the countywide planning policies guide the subsequent adoption of comprehensive plans without overly constraining with excessive detail.

The countywide planning policies shall, at a minimum:

  1. Implement RCW 36.70A.110;

  2. Promote contiguous and orderly development and provision of urban services to such development;

  3. Provide for public capital facilities of regional or statewide importance;

  4. Provide for county-wide transportation facilities;

  5. Consider the need for affordable housing;

  6. Provide for joint county and city planning within the urban growth areas;

  7. Provide for economic development and employment; and

  8. Analyze fiscal impact.

The countywide planning policies, organized in a manner similar to the goals established by GMA, are grouped as follows:

  • Affordable Housing

  • Agricultural Lands

  • Economic Development and Employment

  • Solid Waste

  • Fiscal Impact

  • Historic, Archaeological, and Cultural Preservation

  • Natural Resources, Open Space, and Protection of Environmentally Sensitive Lands

  • Sitting of Public Capital Facilities of local, regional or statewide importance

  • Transportation Facilities

  • Urban Growth Areas

  • Urban Growth Areas

  • Population Allocation


These countywide policies call for the application of planning principles similar to the planning goals and policies in this plan (as referenced) that promote urban development (Goal LU 5), reduce sprawl (Goal PH 1), protect property rights (Goal LU 2), provide for the orderly processing of permits (Goals LU 1 and 2, and Prosser Municipal Code Title 19) and citizen participation (Comprehensive Plan Chapter V), promote the conservation of open space (Goal OS 2), and historic structures (Goal CR 2), protect environmental resources (Goals EV1 through EV4)), support resource based industries (Goal LD 1), and ensure adequate public facilities (Goal LOS 1).


These countywide policies address the designation and sizing of urban growth areas. These policies were followed in the determination of the existing urban growth areas as described below and will be followed in developing any proposal for the expansion to those areas.


These countywide policies address the location of any designated essential public facilities. This comprehensive plan applies these policies in the essential public facility section of the community facilities element.


This countywide policy calls for maintaining active county-city participation in the regional planning of regional transportation facilities and infrastructure improvements. Goal TR1, among others, in this plan reflects this policy.


These countywide policies seek to promote housing compatible with the character and standards of the adjacent area, to allow for modular and manufactured housing, and to support County and cities working together to provide housing for all economic segments of the population. The intent of these policies are reflected in specific countywide planning policies and can be found, in greater detail, in the pertinent and corresponding elements of this document. This Comprehensive Plan follows the countywide Planning Policies for Benton County. Copies of the Benton County-wide Planning Policies are available at the Benton County Planning and Building Department, Planning Annex, Prosser, WA. The Policies are also available at the Benton-Franklin Regional Council, 1622 Terminal Drive, Richland, WA. or at

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