Tri-Cities, Washington – The Ideal Location for Manufacturing Facilities

The Tri-Cities MSA is especially attractive to successful, expanding companies looking to locate branch operations and develop new facilities.  Area thought leaders have created an environment where innovation is focused on developing solutions to tough national energy challenges.

Energy Hub of the Pacific Northwest

Abundant, reliable and inexpensive energy, and a very favorable business climate, make the Tri-Cities an excellent location for all types of manufacturing.  It is especially attractive to companies in the energy sector interested in the growing, energy conscious, worldwide market.

The Mid-Columbia region has a long history of leadership in manufacturing.  Industrial customers in Washington pay an average of 4.51 cents per kilowatt hour, the lowest electricity rates in the nation.

The Tri-Cities is the Energy Hub of Washington and the Pacific Northwest with over 5,000 employees in energy related fields.

In addition to manufacturing, the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in Richland is recognized as a leader in energy technology development.  With over $1 billion Federal research budget and 4,200 employees, PNNL’s energy portfolio includes smart grid applications, energy storage and fuel cell development.

See why the Tri-Cities is Greener, Faster, Bolder!


Excellent Transportation

The Tri-Cities is a transportation center providing unmatched access to interstate highways, service by two national mainline railroads, commercial barge transportation, and air service from four domestic airlines. The state’s deep-water ports and proximity to important Asian markets are important advantages for agricultural trade.

Highway Access

The Tri-Cities is centrally located and linked to the major population centers of the Pacific Northwest, Northern California and Western Canada.


Mileage from Tri-Cities, WA

Travel Time*

Spokane, WA

136 Miles

2 Hours, 15 Minutes

Portland, OR

218 Miles

3 Hours, 40 Minutes

Seattle, WA

225 Miles

3 Hours, 45 Minutes

Boise, ID

293 Miles

4 Hours, 50 Minutes

Vancouver, BC

356 Miles

5 Hours, 50 Minutes

Calgary, AB

567 Miles

9 Hours, 25 Minutes

Salt Lake City, UT

627 Miles

10 Hours, 30 Minutes

Sacramento, CA

677 Miles

11 Hours, 20 Minutes

Billings, MT

678 Miles

11 Hours, 20 Minutes

San Francisco, CA

740 Miles

12 Hours, 20 Minutes

Los Angeles, CA

1,070 Miles

17 Hours, 50 Minutes

Minneapolis, MN

1,515 Miles

25 Hours, 15 Minutes

*Based on Semi-Trucks traveling at 60 MPH

Rail Service

The economy of the Tri-Cities is supported by a strong rail infrastructure providing businesses, ports and farms with competitive access to North American and international markets. Mainline rail freight service is provided by both the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) and Union Pacific (UP) Railroads. Direct access and dual service from these Class I national carriers is very unique.

Air Transportation

The Tri-Cities Airport, owned and operated by the Port of Pasco, ranks fourth in passenger boarding among Washington airports. It is served by Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air, Allegiant Air, Delta Connection/SkyWest, and United Express/SkyWest. Direct daily flights serve San Francisco, CA; Denver, CO; Minneapolis, MN; Portland, OR; Salt Lake City, UT; and Seattle, WA. Less than daily service is available to Mesa/Phoenix, AZ; Los Angeles, CA; and Las Vegas, NV.

For more flight information visit


The Tri-Cities is home to a variety of world-class manufacturers:  Theses companies have benefited from strong academic-industrial  collaborations and partnerships.  These relations are key to improving energy use in manufacturing, and the discovery, development, and commercialization of new manufacturing technologies.

Washington State is consistently singled out for its workforce.  Workers are talented, affordable, highly skilled, and well educated.

SIC Code

Occupation Title


Mean Hourly Wage

Annual Mean Wage


General & Operations Managers





Purchasing Agents, Except Wholesale/Retail/Farm Products





Mechanical Engineers





Engineers, All Other





Electrical & Electronics Engineering Technicians





Productions, Planning & Expediting Clerks





Shipping, Receiving & Traffic Clerks





Shipping, Receiving & Traffic Clerks





Industrial Machinery Mechanics





Electrical & Electronic Equipment Assemblers





Cut/Punch/Press Mach Setters/Oprs/Tenders, Metal/Plastic










Welders, Cutters, Solderers & Brazers





Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers & Weighers




Greener, Faster, Bolder Tri-Cities!

  • The lowest priced electricity in the country benefits business, industry and families.
  • 40% of Washington State’s power is produced within a 100 mile radius of the Tri-Cities.
  • About 90% of the total wind generation capacity in Oregon and Washington is within 125 miles of the Tri-Cities.
  • Smart Grid and Smart Appliance technology and systems research are available for commercialization.
  • Battelle successfully completed a $180 million, five state Smart Grid demonstration project using smart-grid-enabled manufactured components and transactive control technology.
  • Tri-Cities is home to highly skilled craftsmen and among the highest ratio of scientists/engineers per capita in the country.
  • There are over 14 companies and 10 utilities located in the Tri-Cities focusing on renewable energy technologies.
  • Tri-Cities researchers have developed a smart charger to minimize cost and peak power demand while charging electric vehicles.
  • About $70 million of private industry R&D is conducted each year by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
  • The only operating nuclear power plant in Washington State is located in the Tri-Cities, producing 1,157 MW.

Energy News:

Small Modular Reactor (SMR) Hanford Site Analysis Final Report (December 16, 2014)

On March 6, 2014, the state of Washington awarded a grant to the Tri-City Development Council (TRIDEC) to study the Hanford Site as a possible location to construct one of the nation’s initial small modular reactor (SMR). This study explores the feasibility of redeploying existing assets at Hanford to realize potential cost savings from current Hanford operations, which can offset the high costs of licensing and constructing an initial SMR on the site.The study concluded that siting an SMR generating station at Hanford is technically feasible and many benefits come from using the existing infrastructure, local nuclear workforce, and other regional assets. Siting SMRs at Hanford will require a close partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), state of Washington, and regional utilities and power planners.

Grow Your Business in the Tri-Cities

If you are considering relocating or expanding your business, let TRIDEC help you put together the information you need.

  • Create a personalized overview of the region.
  • Provide data on key business factors.
  • Evaluate the available workforce and connect you to resources that will make hiring, interviewing, screening, and training your new workforce easier.
  • Initiate real estate searches.
  • Assist in evaluating incentives.
  • Coordinate site selection trips and customized visits.
  • Organize strategic meetings to make your visit a one-stop collaborative effort with key business leaders, government and community officials.