Revitalizing Richland means changes to Swift corridor

Revitalizing Richland means changes to Swift corridor »Play Video
RICHLAND, Wash. - A grand new plan could re-do downtown Richland as you know it. The city spent big money on changing up what's known as the "Swift Corridor." The idea would re-develop the central part of Richland.

Older parts of Richland no longer have the hustle and bustle they used to. Old, vacant buildings stand where thriving shopping centers used to be. Lots that used to keep businesses now only keep tumbleweeds and rocks.

New development has flocked to the south and west end of town.
Leaving some to wonder about the future of Richland's core.

For city officials, it's not only about building up the newer parts of town, it's about bringing older parts. They are trying to bring the central business district back to life. City planners are shifting some of their resources and energy to this part of town will help secure the financial future.

Richland invested more than $80,000 of your money to study this area, Swift Boulevard from Jadwin to George Washington Way. They're hoping to kick start efforts of a revitalization plan, centered on luring business back to the center of Richland.

It will all start with this strip mall behind Burger King on GW Way. The building could be knocked down to make way for new retail and food.

Business owner Phil Van, "It's hard, it's hard for the last few years because everybody started moving out."

Phil is a hair stylist. He's the only business owner left in this building.
He says he's only able to make ends meet because of a strong client base.

"If they can fill this place it would be perfect it's a really high-potential place," he said.

This is something Richland is well aware of. Just stand on the corner of Jadwin and Swift, the heavy flow of traffic translates to dollar signs for any entrepreneur, especially Phil.

He's hoping that his patience will pay off with a new look for downtown Richland.

Other areas of development outlined in the study include a hotel near Kadlec, developing a couple of acres of parking lot near the federal building and finally finishing up the hotel across the street from that same Burger King on George Washington Way. We also asked about the big hole that's on George Washington Way. The city has no immediate plans to change it.