A blurred vision for downtown Richland needs definition. Our city council has a plan independent of the opinions of local residents.
Is Richland’s downtown to be designed to attract young families who will buy and renovate government houses by offering a pedestrian-friendly downtown community, or retired baby boomers who live in Columbia Point and south Richland? If Richland does not aim to attract young homeowners as a hip, safe, pedestrian community, it will become a downtown of rental properties.
The Tri-Cities Market that was turned down by city officials for their own agenda would be a real draw to downtown living. The corridor into Richland currently looks like a highway for Hanford commuters. Where are the wide, tree-lined promenades that do not grace our boulevard? Why don’t they extend from Winco to WSU? Lively downtowns like Ellensburg, Bellingham and Boise encourage walking by consolidating parking to shared parking lots and garages.
Richland’s downtown has potential to be so much more than parking lots, strip malls, and unkempt rentals. Please share your vision for downtown with your council by email or attending meetings.
With hometown love,
Laila Krowiak, Richland