Articles by Robin Wojtanik

Robin Wojtanik spent most of her career in broadcast journalism, working at television stations around the country. She spent nearly a decade managing newsrooms in the Tri-Cities and Yakima. She enjoys volunteering for Junior Achievement and Christ the King School and serves on the board for the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences’ Northwest chapter. She lives in Richland with her husband and children.
The city of West Richland expects to close on the former Tri-City Raceway before the end of the year, build a new police facility there and then begin wooing future tenants to the remaining 87 acres. (Courtesy city of West Richland)

City hopes new police station will anchor future growth

Port of Kennewick sells former raceway to city, which has big plans to develop it West Richland is close to completing its purchase of the Tri-City Raceway, paving the way for a new police station and a chance to woo future tenants to the property on the west end of town. City officials say moving…

A mixed-use building planned for downtown Kennewick will offer commercial space and luxury apartments in late spring 2021 at 19 W. Canal Drive. (Courtesy The Nineteen)

The Nineteen to arrive in downtown Kennewick in ’21

Investors moving forward with plans to break ground on multimillion dollar project in about six months Luxury apartments are coming to downtown Kennewick as part of a lofty new plan to add a five-story mixed-use building to the corner of West Canal Drive and North Auburn Street. Built from the ground up, the project, called…

Columbia Center mall opened in fall 1969 with 55 stores, a ribbon-cutting ceremony and much fanfare. (Courtesy Columbia Center)

Mall celebrates 50 years of success amid changing retail market

Columbia Center continues to welcome new tenants, hopes to fill vacancies around perimeter of property Vintage advertisements once touted the Columbia Center mall as the “Manhattan of the Northwest,” and likened it to being like “Tahiti all year long,” where it was a balmy 72 degrees indoors, allowing shoppers to escape the wind inside air-conditioned…

Goodwill_Dress

Goodwill’s auction site showcases its ‘coolest, weirdest’ donations

Donations made to Tri-City area Goodwill stores listed for nationwide sales A small team of employees spend their workday at Goodwill Industries of the Columbia sorting through unique instruments, collectible jewelry, antique artwork, vintage toys and often the unexpected—like framed animal teeth. “The teeth I can’t get out of my head for some reason,” said…

Gurbir Sandhu, president of the hospitality group Ignite Hotels LLC, paid $3.5 million at a recent auction for a 15,000-square-foot home built by a former NHL goalie on 95 acres of land on the Horse Heaven Hills. (Courtesy DeCaro Auctions)

Tri-City hotel mogul buys Kolzig mansion for $3.5M

A prominent Tri-City mansion recently sold to a local hotel mogul for $3.5 million. The new owner of the home built by hockey legend Olie Kolzig is Gurbir Sandhu, president of the hospitality group Ignite Hotels LLC. Sandhu said he intends to deed the Kennewick property to an LLC that has not yet been formed…

Badger Canyon Apartments off Ridgeline Drive in Kennewick. (Photo by Scott Butner Photography)

Market overview: Relief on horizon for housing shortage as prices skyrocket

The Tri-City construction market continues to add millions of dollars in new projects as home and commercial lease prices skyrocket. The average Tri-City home sale price did not dip below $300,000 for the first eight months of 2019. But area real estate experts say prices could begin to level off in 2020. “I think we’re…

WoodSpring Suites construction on Tapteal Drive in Richland. (Photo by Shawna Dinh)

Commercial real estate: Costs continue to drive up prices

Commercial real estate agents cite years of ongoing growth for the Tri-Cities’ especially tight market today. “There’s a lot of leasing, a lot of sales, a lot of new construction going on,” said Rob Ellsworth, senior advisor at SVN | Retter & Co. in Kennewick. “Our market might even be too strong right now because…

Duportail Street bridge construction in Richland. (Photo by Taryn Harkness)

City of Richland: New bridge, developments to boost central district

Transformational projects in central Richland will add new housing options, transportation routes and businesses to the city’s core. The long-anticipated Duportail Street bridge is expected to open in fall 2020. The route will connect drivers from the Stevens Drive corridor to the Queensgate Drive retail hub, and provide easier access to locations in central Richland,…

Richland’s Shilo Inn at 50 Comstock St. has remodeled its common areas, repainted and rebranded itself as a riverfront property. The name change will be official at the end of October. (Photo by Robin Wojtanik)

Multimillion dollar hotel projects offer visitors more getaway choices

The Tri-Cities will add more than 300 hotel rooms to the market when multiple hotels open in the next year. And more rooms will be available in 2021 and beyond, with other hotel projects currently in the planning stages. The opening of three hotels with a combined value of $21.5 million will increase the number of available…

Richland’s Lance Frisbee recently received a plaque from YouTube acknowledging 1 million subscribers to his YouTube channel, which focuses on video gaming and specifically the game PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. (Courtesy Powerbang Gaming)

Richland YouTube celebrity trades 9-to-5 life for professional gamer gig

It’s not easy to describe what Richland’s Lance Frisbee does for a living. He’s a gaming celebrity, social media influencer and YouTuber. “There are a lot of people who are really curious about my line of work. They want to know why I travel all over the world. I am still working on my elevator…

Latest News

Tri-City Herald getting new office, a new owner

Help shape the future of Kennewick’s waterfront

Bankrupt Tuesday Morning closing Kennewick store 

Tri-City mayors dream of returning focus to potholes, parks and police 

Pair of leases lets Benton County elections spread out for 2020 cycle 

Seattle Children’s moving Tri-City clinic to bigger spot next spring 

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