Port of Benton was established in 1958 as a special purpose district under the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 53. We were chartered to “promote industrial development and transportation, including general aviation, in Benton County.”
The Port was created following the transfer of ownership of Richland from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to the citizens. Previously, Richland was the property of the federal government as part of a World War II secret mission called the Manhattan Project.
The property that was originally designated as the Port’s District was 290 acres known as Camp Hanford. The land was transferred from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to the Port in 1959. Today, that property is known as the Technology and Business Campus in Richland.
Port of Benton was designated as a Nuclear Port in 1965 by the U.S. Coast Guard and is one of only a handful of ports in the nation authorized to handle radioactive materials.