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Spokane has transformed from a gritty railroad town to a hub for young professionals, health science students

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The WSU Spokane campus, with its burgeoning health science programs, is reclaiming industrial areas and stretching the downtown area of Spokane. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
Once upon a time there was a gritty little railroad town. Next to the switching yards where locomotives chuffed and cinders flew, its downtown had a nice department store where everybody shopped, and a famous hotel where everybody stayed. But in the 1960s a freeway bypassed the gritty little town, and out beyond its outskirts of bars and used-car lots some shiny suburban shopping malls appeared. We’re new, they said to the gritty little town, and you’re old. The future is here and it will pass you by. We will change, said the leaders of the gritty little town, rolling up their sleeves.

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