Current News

7th Avenue will be closed, between Yew and Walnut Street, for utility construction through 1/13/17. Please use alternate routes.  For questions or concerns please contact Tim Shell at 577-3322

The City of Kelso is pleased to announce a public hearing with the Planning Commission to take testimony on updates to the following public documents.

1. Comprehensive Plan Future Land Use Map: allows for a new mixed residential use, rezone requests, and an adjustment to the Adult Oriented Business Overlay to allow for consideration of recreational marijuana sales.

2. Zoning Map. Zoning Map needs to be consistent with the Future Land Use Map.

3. Creation of the Uniform Development Code (UDC) and Zoning Code modifications. The UDC will allow all development regulations to be held under one title in the Municipal Code, making it more user friendly. Individual sections of the code will be updated for the purposes of clarity and streamlining.

Date, Time and Place:    

January 10, 2017 at 6 PM

Kelso City Hall, Council Chambers

203 S. Pacific

Kelso, WA

Anyone interested may appear and be heard. The decision of the City Council will be mailed to all those who submit comments, testify at the hearing or request the decision in writing.  Any aggrieved party of record can file an appeal with Cowlitz County Superior Court.

***Written public comment can be accepted until 4:30 PM on January 9, 2017***






Walnut Street between S. 7th Avenue and S. 12th Avenue will be closed intermittently for road work next week (Dec. 12-16). Traffic on side streets will also be affected. Significant delays should be expected. Please use alternate routes. This work is weather dependent and the schedule is subject to change.

City of Kelso
Engineering Department

11/28/16 The Nutter Corporation of Vancouver, Washington, under contract to the City of Kelso, is constructing a project to improve Yew Street from S. Pacific Avenue to S. 7th Avenue. Beginning Monday, December 5, 2016, Nutter will begin installing underground utilities for stormwater drainage in Yew Street, between S. Pacific Avenue and 7th Avenue. This utility work will take about 3 weeks to complete and is scheduled to be done by December 23, 2016. Once this utility work has been completed the project will then be shut down for the winter with remaining work to be completed in Spring 2017 as weather allows. This work will create disruptions to the flow of traffic. At times, detours will be used to redirect traffic around or through the work area. City of Kelso Engineering Department (360) 423-6590.

Beginning on or about November 28th, 2016, Brookhart Excavation LLC of Longview, WA, under contract to the City of Kelso, will begin work to repair a section of storm line and concrete roadway within the 1100 block of S. 6th Ave.  Marking and other preparatory work has already begun. The work will be conducted during daylight hours and, weather permitting, is scheduled to be finished by December 12, 2016.

This work will create disruptions to the flow of traffic. At times, detours will be used to redirect traffic around or through the work area. Every reasonable effort will be made to allow you access to your destination.

We realize this is an inconvenience and we appreciate your cooperation.


City of Kelso
Engineering Department
(360) 423-6590

City of Kelso Annual Tree Lighting Festival Features Family Fun and Santa at Train Depot.  

The City of Kelso’s Annual Tree Lighting Festival will light up Downtown Kelso for the holidays on Friday, December 2nd from 6:00 – 9:00pm at the Kelso Train Depot.  This year’s theme is “Christmas in Toyland” and headlines another year of music, games, and festivities for the whole family.

Kelso Mayor David Futcher will light the Christmas Tree sitting atop the Train Depot’s clock tower at 6:10 p.m. (courtesy of Campbell Crane). The evening will include Christmas music, refreshments, games along with prizes, crafts, face painting, a hayride, and cookie decorating.   Additionally, Santa Claus will make a special pre-Christmas visit early in the evening to tidy up his list of Kelso’s naughty and nice.

Come join in the fun and help celebrate the commencement of the Christmas season in Kelso, Washington.  

For additional information please contact Cindy Donaldson at 360.577.3390 or

In accordance with RCW 35.21.157, notice is hereby given that the City of Kelso is proposing a rate adjustment in its solid waste handling fees for consideration by Council on November 1, 2016. Said fees will be effective January 1, 2017.


The City of Kelso worked closely with David Evans and Associates, Lower Columbia Developmnet, Columbia - CPC, and Winters Anchor Point, to complete the Anchor Point Feasibility Study in March 2016.  The Study looked conceptually at design and site access development alternatives.  The study was funded through a Washington State Community Economic Revitalization Grant and additional funding received by the owners of the Winters Anchor Point industrial site. 

View the Anchor Point Feasibility study at the City of Kelso Engineering webpage.   




The City Council formed a Charter Review Committee in April 2016.  The Charter Review Committee has met several times to review the City Charter amendments and provisions.  The City Council adopted the Committee recommended amendments and will move these forward for the November 4, 2016 ballot for voters to decide.  Proposed Charter Amendments:

Also, "pro" and "con" statements and additional information regarding the amendments is available on page 113 of the Cowlitz County local voters pamphlet.



A 2017-2018 Preliminary Budget Hearing for the City of Kelso will be held on Tuesday, November 1st, 6:00 P.M., at Kelso City Hall, 203 South Pacific, Kelso Washington.  Included in this hearing will be the discussion of proposed utility rate increases.


NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the City Manager of the City of Kelso has filed a preliminary budget for the ensuing biennium 2017-2018