Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Reporter's Notebook

-Megan Patrick-Vaughn can be reached at


As part of a former Fourth Plain Boulevard business, I’ve kept a particular interest in the revitalization effort of the sadly rundown area. It’s got a subarea plan, it’s got a revitalization task force and now the Business Coalition branch of the task force is working to up its visibility and get more businesses involved.

On Saturday, businesses along Fourth Plain from Fort Vancouver Way to Falk Road will see 120 to 140 volunteers in matchy shirts brushing up the neighborhood.
The desired outcome is two-fold: instilling a sense of pride in the area and raising visibility of the coalition to inspire businesses to stake a claim in the revitalization effort – demonstrating that the community is pulling itself up by the bootstraps.

“Businesses along the corridor are negatively impacted by the beauty or the ugliness of it,” said Sharif Burdzik, chair of the Business Coalition. “This is something to make it a little more upbeat – to show something positive can actually happen on Fourth Plain and prompt others to make their own contribution.”

The effort is still in its infancy, Burzdik said.
“For us to be relevant, we need more involvement,” he said. “To get more involvement, people need to see relevance.”
It is wise to think this way and it’s something many of us are working on at the moment.

Many businesses, both in the Fourth Plain Corridor and in other parts of the city and county, take a negative view of the area, some pretending it doesn’t exist. But Burzdik raised an excellent point – what is good for the areas that need attention is good for the whole community.
“If we can raise Fourth Plain up just a little bit, think of the amount of relief that will provide for Public Works in terms of graffiti removal and more,” he said. “It’s good for all of Clark County.”

Businesses that are interested in getting involved can contact Sharif Burdzik at or 360-759-3528.


Anonymous said...

4th Plain looks awesome. I was surprised and delighted to see so many youth working so diligently to clean up the area. Now there are no weeds growing out of the cracks in the curb, not a speck of trash to be seen. Looks much better than most areas of town since the landscapers and youth were more attentive to detail than most other areas of town. Would be great to repeat this again next year. Good Job!!!