Economic Development

City of Milton-Freewater Economic Development

Milton-Freewater is located in the foothills of the Blue Mountains.  It is a thriving community that is surrounded by orchards, wheat fields and vineyards.  The recently designated Rocks District of Milton-Freewater American Viticultural Area (AVA) is considered one of the most unusual and distinctive grape-growing regions in the Pacific Northwest.  This is due to the cobblestones that are predominate in the district.  These stones it turns out, are perfect for growing wine grapes.

Infrastructure, including a City owned and operated electric utility with low rates, nearby medical facilities, airports and housing makes Milton-Freewater an ideal location when considering this community for locating a new business, or expanding an existing business.


Economic Development Data

Milton Founded 1872
Freewater Founded 1889
Incorporated Milton-Freewater 1950
Area (City Limits) 1.93 sq. mi.
Area (Urban Growth Boundary) 3.51 sq. mi.
Population 7,210 people
Urban Growth Boundary Rate 0.8%
Average Household Size 2.81 people
Median Gross Rent $627.00
Owner Occupied Median Home Value $118,400
Total Housing Units 3,210 units
High School Graduates or Higher 79.8 %  (Ages 25+)
Workforce Population 62.1%   (Ages 16+)
Transient Tax Rate 8%
City Tax Rate 3.7499/1000
ODOT Volume of Cars on the Oregon-Washington HWY .86 miles south of Stateline 15,300 Vehicles Average Annual Traffic

Source: United States Census Bureau (2019), Oregon Department of Transportation (2018), Milton-Freewater Utility Inquiry (as of July 30th, 2020), Portland State University - Population Research Center (June 30, 2019)


Source: Portland State University - Population Research Center (June 30, 2019)


Source: 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 Business Licenses submitted to the City of Milton-Freewater


New Household Projections

Current Population (2020) Forecasted New Population (2045) Projection Household Size
7,210 people 8,155 people 2.81 people

Source: Portland State University - Population Research Center, June 30, 2019



Walla Walla Regional Airport (Walla Walla, WA) 15.2 miles
Eastern Oregon Regional Airport (Pendleton, OR) 33.6 miles
Tri-Cities Airport (Pasco, WA) 53.7 miles

Source: Google Maps


Regional Connectivity

Walla Walla, Washington 10.4 miles
Pendleton, Oregon 28.9 miles
Waitsburg, Washington 32.1 miles
Kennewick, Washington 53.6 miles
Hermiston, Oregon 58.2 miles
La Grande, Oregon 74.5 miles
Baker, Oregon 117 miles

Source: Google Maps


Top 5 Employers

MF Unified School District 237
Horizon Project 200
Earl Brown & Sons 100
City of Milton-Freewater 74
Safeway 71

Source: 2019-2020 Business License



  • Elementary Schools

    • Gib Olinger Elementary • 1011 S Mill St., Milton-Freewater • 541-938-8700
    • Ferndale Elementary • 5344 W Ferndale Rd., Milton-Freewater • 541-938-5412
    • Freewater Elementary • 17 NW 8th Ave., Milton-Freewater • 541-938-6611
  • Middle School

    • Central Middle School • 306 SW 2nd Ave., Milton-Freewater• 541-938-5504
  • High School

    • McLoughlin High School • 120 S Main St., Milton-Freewater• 541-938-5591
  • Higher Education

    • Blue Mountain Community College • 311 N Columbia St., Milton-Freewater • 541-938-7176
    • Walla Walla Community College • 500 Tausick Way, Walla Walla, WA • 509-522-5900
    • Walla Walla University • 204 S College Ave., College Place, WA • 800-540-8900
    • Whitman College • 345 Boyer Ave., Walla Walla, WA • 509-527-5111


Amenities & Parks

Milton-Freewater has 53 acres of parks, an 18-hole executive golf and "foot-golf" course, aquatic center, tennis courts,  and racquetball courts. Rotary Sports Complex located at 680 County Road, contains baseball, softball, and soccer fields. Grove Sports Complex, located at 129 SE 15th Ave., contains two soccer, a football field, and a jogging path. Memorial Field, located at 644 County Rd., contains a fenced field used for tee ball and/or youth soccer. Gib Olinger School, located at 1011 S Mill St., provides two softball fields and Shockman Field, located at 210 Catherine Ave., contains a football and/or soccer field as well as a running track. 


The City of Milton-Freewater provides all City utilities, including electric service. City Light and Power is the oldest municipal electric utility operating in the State of Oregon and also offers one of the lowest power rates in the Northwest.