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.
Local investors plan to tear down and rebuild a long-vacant building that sits near Frost Me Sweet and The Parkway’s fountain.

Dilapidated Parkway property coming down

High-end cocktail bar, coffee shop likely tenants in building near fountain Big plans are in the works for a building described as an eyesore in the heart of Richland’s The Parkway. A group of six local investors with Prospere Ventures bought the property and hope to begin demolition soon to build a new building valued…

Photo by Robin Wojtanik
Michael Steiner, vice president of Latrobe Foundry, stands in front of a lathe machine used to manufacture aluminum pipe fittings at its Pasco warehouse. The 86-year-old family-owned company, headquartered in Pennsylvania, chose Pasco to open its first West Coast operation.

Longtime Pennsylvania foundry opens in Pasco

Most hours of the day, a lathe machine is hard at work in a Pasco warehouse, creating pipe fittings for a Pennsylvania company that recently opened its first West Coast shop. Latrobe Foundry Machine & Supply Co., based near Pittsburgh, picked the Tri-Cities to be closer to its customers. The company founder’s great-grandson moved his…

A Kennewick homebuilding company is building a large warehouse and office that will serve as a headquarters for Infinity Homes of Washington, Promade Homes and RP Development in unincorporated Benton County at 105609 E. Wiser Parkway.

Kennewick homebuilders plan new headquarters

Infinity, Promade, RP Development owners building 31,000-square-foot building near Cottonwood school The owners of Infinity Homes of Washington, Promade Homes and RP Development are building a 31,000-square-foot building at 105609 E. Wiser Parkway. The new warehouse and showroom are under construction just south of Interstate 82 in unincorporated Benton County, near CSS Mini Storage, just…

Framing is underway at a planned Taco Time at 2222 Keene Road in south Richland that will replace the one in central Richland on Swift Boulevard.

Richland Taco Time plans move for drive-thru

A new Taco Time planned for south Richland means the closure of the city’s current Taco Time franchise in Richland’s downtown core. The newest restaurant will open at 2222 Keene Road, near the busy intersection of Keene Road and Queensgate Boulevard, next door to an Chevron gas station. A wooden sign is up announcing the…

MacDonald-Miller Facility Solutions, a Seattle-based heating, ventilation and air conditioning or mechanical services company, plans to base its Eastern Washington operations in Kennewick. It anticipates an early fall opening. (Courtesy MacDonald-Miller)

Seattle-based HVAC contractor expanding to Kennewick

MacDonald-Miller to open its Eastern Washington headquarters in fall after moving Moses Lake office A Seattle-based mechanical contractor is looking to expand its Tri-City customer base by opening a shop where customers can fulfill commercial needs for heating, ventilation and air conditioning as well as other mechanical services. MacDonald-Miller Facility Solutions has plans to open…

The owner of the growing Roasters Coffee business wants to build a 
coffee shop at 590 W. Gage Blvd. in Richland, a property once home to a Circle K gas station and mini-mart. It’s part of owner Wes Heyden’s plan to open 25 total shops by 2023, including in Spokane and Yakima.

Roasters Coffee eyes busy Richland corner

Former Circle K site at Leslie, Gage being cleaned to prep for sale The owner of Roasters Coffee wants to build a drive-thru coffee stand at the busy corner of Leslie Road and West Gage Boulevard by spring 2020, as part of his long-range goal to open 25 shops by 2023. Formerly the site of…

Dr. Jessica Schneider’s new Richland clinic, Empowered Health, breaks tradition to offer more personalized patient care. (Photo by Herb Collingridge IV)

Richland doctor offers membership health care

Tri-City native offers nontraditional setting for personalized care A new membership-based health care clinic is available in Richland, the brainchild of a board-certified internist who wanted to offer more patient-focused care. Dr. Jessica Schneider, a Hanford High School graduate, decided to jump off the “hamster wheel” she said was inherent in traditional medical practices to…

To offset the challenges presented with the sale of wheat, some farmers have begun a crop rotation with canola, which produces a vibrant yellow flower as it grows. (Photo by Karen Sowers)

Agriculture powerhouse: Crop value high amid trade threats

Persistent issues with international trade have been threatening Washington’s most successful crops. Ongoing trade issues with Asian markets and North American neighbors are “making farmers nervous,” said Michelle Hennings, executive director of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers. “We have to have trading partners,” she said. With $6.7 billion in food and agricultural products sent…

The Washington cherry crop is consistently among the top 10 agricultural commodities in the state with predictions of this year’s crop reaching 25 million boxes of fruit. (Courtesy Northwest Cherry Growers)

Fruitful summer: Cherry crops a sweet success

The 2019 Washington cherry crop is expected to reach nearly 25 million boxes. These initial estimates come from about 2,100 cherry growers who are part of the Northwest Cherry Growers/Washington State Fruit Commission, a five-state group covering orchards in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Utah. Before cherries are picked, “there are still plenty of opportunities…

Ripe Apples in Orchard ready for harvesting

Apple action: New variety coming as tariff threats loom

As the state’s apple growers strategize to overcome international tariffs, they’re also looking ahead to introduce to the world a highly-anticipated variety — the Cosmic Crisp. The end of the 20 percent tariffs on apples shipped to Mexico in mid-May was welcome news to the state’s apple industry, which saw overall exports down 32.7 percent…

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