Spokane County commissioners on Tuesday approved the sale of 400 acres of property near Airway Heights to the Spokane Airports, taking a substantial loss on their original purchase price in 2008.
The Spokane Airport Board has agreed to buy the land as part of the airports’ long-range planning for the area east of Fairchild Air Force Base.
The property was acquired by the county for $3.2 million in 2008 for the purpose of rerouting a Geiger Spur rail line off Fairchild property.
The airports have agreed to pay the county $1.75 million for the land. The price was based on a professional appraisal.
One of the sellers in 2008 was John Condon Jr., a political contributor to Commissioner Todd Mielke and former Commissioner Mark Richard. Condon, of Northwest Industrial Services LLC, was paid $600,000 by the county for 150 acres of rock mining land, a price that was criticized at the time as too high.
The land was purchased by Northwest Industrial Services in 2001 for $65,000 but was improved to increase its value, Condon said in 2008.
The county received state and federal funding to help finance the relocation of the spur line serving industrial users in the Airway Heights area.
The land west of Craig Road was recently designated by county commissioners as part of the urban growth area to allow industrial development there.
Spokane Airports is looking to expand aerospace industrial uses on the West Plains, and also is looking to preserve a way to move aircraft between Spokane International Airport and Fairchild in the future.