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Clark Asks: A totem pole, an abandoned building and speed signs

Memories of a long-gone landmark, trepidation about a long-lasting eyesore and curiosity about an unusually bossy traffic sign has driven our readers to seek the help of The Columbian’s reporting team.

Those questions were among a number of queries recently posed to The Columbian’s Clark Asks feature, a special reporting project guided by readers.

We narrowed the list to three questions. Now it’s your turn. We need your input on which one our reporters should tackle first:

• “What was the history of the totem pole that was at the old Totem Pole Restaurant at the corner of 78th Street and Highway 99? Where did it end up?”

• “What’s with the creepy, abandoned building in the Providence Academy parking lot?”

• “Why were signs providing a speed and the message ‘slow down’ added to the corner of Northeast 18th Street and 192nd Avenue?”

Voting will continue until Sept. 17 at We will announce the winner once the voting is done.

If your favorite doesn’t end up the top vote-getter, don’t despair. Runners-up often end up in future voting rounds, as did the question about the creepy building near the Providence Academy.

We are getting ready to investigate the winning question in that last voting round: whether signs placed in public rights of way advertising things like roofing, gutter cleaning and painting are in violation of city or county code.

On Saturday, reporter Jerzy Shedlock explained why ramp signals were operating midday on a busy onramp to Interstate 5 in our latest Clark Asks story. Earlier in August, reporter Calley Hair explored the future of Vancouver’s Waterworks Park and the fate of its amphitheater.

All of those questions came from our readers, and we’re always on the lookout for new ideas. Got a question of your own? Visit the Clark Asks page, and let us know about a place, person or issue in Clark County that mystifies or intrigues you. We’ll do our best to find the answer.

And while you’re visiting the Clark Asks page, check out the “What’s that Weird Thing in Clark County?” map. We’ve mapped some of the stories generated by reader questions and included follow-up stories.


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