WORKING PAPER NO.  12
                   CHEHALIS RIVER BASIN (WASHINGTON)
PRELIMINARY ECONOMIC RECONNAISSANCE AND ESTIMATE OF GROWTH,  1960-2010
                            January,  1962
               Prepared by:   Economic Studies  Group
                             Water Supply and  Pollution Control  Program
                             Pacific Northwest

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                CHEHALIS RIVER BASIN (WASHINGTON)
PRELIMINARY ECONOMIC RECONNAISSANCE AND ESTIMATE OF GROWTH,  1960-2010
I.  Introduction.

     A.  Purpose of This Analysis.

     B.  Definition of. Area.

     C.  Study Period.

     D.  Limitations of This Analysis,


II.  Present Economy of the Basin.

     A.  Population.

     B.  Industrial Pattern.


Ill.  Estimated Growth,

     A.  Possibilities for Growth.

     B.  Estimate^of Future Growth.
Prepared by:  Economic Studies Group
              Water Supply and Pollution Control Program,  Pacific
                Northwest
              January, 1962

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                                                  January 15, 1962

                CHEHALIS RIVER BASIN (WASHINGTON)
PRELIMINARY ECONOMIC RECONNAISSANCE AND ESTIMATE OF GROWTH,  1960-2010
I.  Introduction.

     A.  Purpose of This Analysis.

         This analysis is intended to provide a preliminary estimate
of the economic potentials and anticipated growth of the subject area.

     B.  Definition of the Area.

         The Chehalis River Basin includes most of Grays Harbor County,
the western halves of Lewis and Thurston Counties, and a small portion
of Mason County.

     C.  Study Period.

         The study period is the 50-year period ending 2010, with an
interim point at 1980.

     D.  Limitations of This Analysis.

         This analysis is intended only as an initial estimate of the
outlook for growth in the subject area, based on broad trends.  Sub-
sequently, in connection with the preparation of the Columbia River
Basin Project, additional and more detailed economic analysis will
be considered.  Such an analysis would include studies of growth
potential on an Industry-by-industry basis.  At that time, this
preliminary estimate will be reviewed and revised if necessary.
II.  Present Economy of the Basin.

     A.  Population.

         Estimated population of the Chehalis River Basin is  shown
in Table 1.  There was little change in population during the 1950-60
decade.  Small increases in some areas were offset by decreases  in
others.  There appear to have been no areas of rapid population  growth
in the Basin during the 1950-60 period.

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                             Table 1
        ESTIMATED POPULATION IN THE CHEHALIS RIVER BASIN
                    (Population in thousands)

                                                      1960 as
                                                       % of
                Area                  1950    1960     1950

      Portion of Greys Harbor         51.3    51.6      101
      Portion of Lewis County         30.2    29.1       96
      Portion of Thurston County       6.2     6.5      105
      Portion of Mason County          0.6     0.5       80

      TOTAL, Chehalis River Basin     88.3    87.7       93
          The thirteen principal urban communities in the Basin are
listed in Table 2, with their population at the time of the 1950
.and 1960 census..  The four largest cities in the Basin had small
declines in population during the decade.  Some of the other com-
munities had small increases in population, though it is not possible
from available statistics to eliminate the effects of any annexations
to cities that may have occurred during the decade.  The thirteen
urban communities listed in Table 2 constitute about 60 percent of
total population in the Basin.

                             Table 2
 POPULATION IN PRINCIPAL CITIES AND TOWNS IN THE CHEHALIS BASIN

                            April 1,    April 1,    1960 as %
     Community                1950        1960       of 1950

    Aberdeen                19,653      18,741          95
    Bucoda                     473         390          82
    Centralia                8,657       8,586          99
    Chehalis                 5,639       5,199          92
    Cosmopolis               1,164       1,312         113
    Elma                     1,543       1,811         117
    Hoquiam                 11,123      10,762          97
    Montesano                2,328       2,486         107
    McCleary                 1,175       1,115          95
    Napavlne                   242         314         130
    Oakville                   372         377         101
    Tenino                     969         836          86
    Westport                   731         976         134

    TOTAL, 13 communities   54,069      52,905          98

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     B.  Industrial Pattern.

         The economy of the Chehalis River Basin is heavily dependent
on lumber and wood products manufacturing, which provided about 80
percent of all manufacturing employment in 1950.  Employment in that
industrial classification dropped to about 74 percent of all manu-
facturing jobs in 1960, due partly to the depressed condition of the
lumber industry.  The 1960 figure is based on data for employment
covered by unemployment compensation only.

         Table 3 shows total employment (based on U. S. Census data)
in Grays Harbor and Lewis Counties in 1950.  Employment data are not
available for the portions of Mason and Thurston Counties which lie
in the Chehalis River Basin.  However, over 90 percent of Basin popu-
lation is in Grays Harbor and Lewis Counties.  In Table 3, the import-
ance of lumber and wood products employment is readily apparent.
Another important industry is pulp and paper, which represents the
bulk of the employment in the "all other manufacturing" category.
Over 90 percent of all manufacturing employment in the two-county
area rests upon the timber resource.
                             Table 3
EMPLOYMENT, BY INDUSTRY, IN GRAYS HARBOR AND LEWIS COUNTIES,  1950
            (Data for Employed Civilian Labor Force)

               Total Population	97.399
               Total Labor Force           35,027
               Agriculture                  3,617
               Forestry and fisheries         625
               Mining                         114
               Manufacturing, TOTAL        12,865
                 Lumber, wood products     10,314
                 Food and kindred             840
                 Pulp and paper               316
                 All other                  1,395
               Construction                 1,747
               All services                16,059
         There is considerable employment in fishing in Grays Harbor,
although total employment in the "forestry and fisheries" category was
less than 2 percent of the total labor force at the time of the April,
1950 census.  About 10 percent of the labor force was employed in
agriculture.

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         Table 4 shows the relative specialization in the Chehalis
River Basin economy by comparing the distribution of the labor force
there with the distribution in the Seattle Region, of which it is a
part.  The table illustrates the Chehalis Basin's heavy concentration
in timber-based Industries1 and its dependence upon the Seattle Metro-
politan Area for many services.  While employment in agriculture is
above the Seattle Region's average, it is below that in the Portland
Region, which had 44.7 persons in agriculture per 1,000 population at
the time of the 1950 census.
                             Table 4
   EMPLOYMENT BY INDUSTRY PER 1,000 OF TOTAL POPULATION, 1950
              (Total Employed Civilian Labor Force)

                                        ChehaUs^     Seattle
           Industry                      Basin          Region

       Total Labor Force
         per 1.000 population	359.6	351.4
Agriculture
Forestry and fisheries
Mining
Manufacturing, TOT/L
Lumber, wood products
Food and kindred
Printing, publishing
All other manufacturing^'
Construction
All Services^'
37.1
6.4
1.2
132.1
105.9
8.6
3.3
14.3
17.9
164.9
27.9
3.4
1.6
78.7
25;8
9.4
4.7
38.8
26.8
213.0
       'Distribution based on figures for Grays Harbor and Lewis
         Counties.
       'Includes pulp and paper.
       4/Includes "industry not reported" classification, representing
         less than 1 percent of labor force.
III.  Estimated Growth.

       A.  Possibilities for Growth.

           The economy of the Chehalis River Basin during the decade
1950-60 experienced no total growth.  Not only the cities, as a group,
but the area as a whole declined slightly in population during the

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period.  This occurred while the State of Washington was growing at
a rate of 1.8 percent per year and the Puget Sound Area at a rate of
2.1 percent per year.

         The outlook for the future of the Basin appears to be tied
closely to the possibilities for maintaining or possibly increasing
the timber harvest.  A preliminary appraisal of the outlook for the
timber resource suggests that the decreasing availability of old-
growth timber will be offset by second-growth timber from tree farms
so that total harvest may, over the long run, be maintained, or even
increased slightly.  However, any increase in total cut is likely to
be paralleled by increasing productivity per worker, so that no increase"
in the labor force in lumber and wood products industries is foreseen.

         A pulp mill existed in the lower Basin prior to 1950 and a
another was established during the 1950-60 decade.  It is likely
that some expansion will take place in employment in this industry,
which would mean an additional diversion of some of the timber resource
from lumber and wood products uses to pulp and paper uses.

         Some economic growth can also be built upon expansion of the
tourist industry around Grays Harbor.

         The cities of Centralia and Chehalis, in the upper Basin, have
performed service and trade functions for the area around them.  These
cities declined in population during 1950-60 and one reason for that
decline is probably the increasing ease and speed of transport to the
Vancouver-Portland metropolitan area to the south and to Olympia and
the Tacoma-Seattle metropolitan area to the north.  While the central
location of Chehalis and Centralia between these population centers
to the north and south might attract some distributive industries, it
seems likely that this tendency will be more than offset by population
in the area going out to the larger cities for trade and service pur-
poses .

     B.  Estimate of Future Growth.

         Various projections for future population growth for the
State of Washington and for the Puget Sound Basin have been made by
State and Federal agencies.  The "medium" or "most likely" forecasts
anticipate a growth in the State and the Puget Sound Basin of about
2.0 percent per year during 1960-80 and about 1.7 percent for 1980-
2010.  It appears likely that the Chehalis River Basin will grow
considerably less rapidly than those other areas.  For purposes of
this initial reconnaissance, it is assumed here that the population
decline in the Chehalis River Basin can be reversed but that the

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annual growth rate is unlikely to exceed half of the growth rates
forecast for the State as a whole or for the Fuget Sound Basin as a
whole.  If annual growth rates for the Chehalis River Basin of 1.0
percent during 1960-80 and 0.8 percent for 1980-2010 are assumed.
population of the Basin would be as follows:

                 1960         1980          2010

                 87,700      107,000      136,000

         Within the subject area the western part of the Chehalis
River Basin is likely to attract more of the anticipated growth than
the eastern part so that there will be a relative increase in the
population of the lower Basin.

         No attempt is being made at this time to forecast the growth
outlook for individual cities.  A rough guide to the cities' future
population can be based on the assumption that their growth will
parallel that forecast for the Basin as a whole, 1.0 percent per year
during 1960-80 and 0.8 percent during 1980-2010.

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