Ellensburg, Washington

Ellensburg has been part farm town, part college town for more than 100 years. These two employment bases have kept the city economically stable. In recent years, the town has boomed, both in terms of population, and in terms of economic indicators like income and home value. It is increasingly popular with migrants from the "West Side," the Seattle side of the Cascade Mountains. Some are telecommuters who travel the four hours round trip to Seattle a few days a week. Others are retirees or soon-to-be-retirees. Stores in downtown Ellensburg reflect these many different type of resident offering farm suppy stories beside swank restaurants beside coffee shops. For 30 years, Ellensburg successfully discouraged big-box stores that wanted to locate on its fringe. But in November 2007, the city council voted to allow development at its I-90 interchanges. Some residents argue that new stores will reinvigorate the city's economy and provide new jobs. Others say that big-box stores will hurt the city's downtown, locally-owned businesses.

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Read more:

City of Ellensburg, Washington.

Ellensburg and Kittitas County's Daily Record.

Ellensburg Rodeo.

"The American College Town." Blake Gumprecht. Geographical Review. January 2003.

The Great Columbian Plain A Historical Geography, 1805-1910. Donald Meinig, 1968.