Outdoors blog

Regional trails plan unveiled Tuesday at REI

A mountain biker rides along the roughly graded section of the Centennial Trail while visitors look down from a new townhome at Kendall Yards on Wednesday. At far right (in glasses) is Michael Terrell, the landscape architect for the trail project. Greenstone Corp., which is building the homes at Kendall Yards, celebrated the final plan Wednesday for the two miles of trail from Monroe Street to the end of Kendall Yards to the west. (Jesse Tinsley)
A mountain biker rides along the roughly graded section of the Centennial Trail while visitors look down from a new townhome at Kendall Yards on Wednesday. At far right (in glasses) is Michael Terrell, the landscape architect for the trail project. Greenstone Corp., which is building the homes at Kendall Yards, celebrated the final plan Wednesday for the two miles of trail from Monroe Street to the end of Kendall Yards to the west. (Jesse Tinsley)

TRAILS -- An update to the 2008 Spokane County Regional Trails Plan will help integrate routes for walkers, runners, skaters, cyclists and equestrians into planning and development as the population grows, officials say.

The draft plan, up for county approval this month, identifies 677 miles of routes ranging from single tracks to the 12-foot-wide Centennial Trail, said Parks Department planner Paul Knowles.

The plan will help the county preserve and maintain existing trails while identifying links for an interconnected network of user-friendly trails, he said.

But don't take our word for it: check it out for yourself:

  • See maps, ask questions and comment on updates to the Spokane County Regional Trail Plan at an open house meeting Tuesday, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m., at REI, 1125 N. Monroe St.
  • See the Regional Trail Plan documents on the County Parks website.

The county Planning Commission is set to review the draft plan on Jan. 16.

Outdoor groups in the Inland Northwest Trails Coalition helped fund the trail planning, map trails and propose possible links and expansion throughout the region.

The new Centennial Trail segment through Kendall Yards is indicates the benefits that can be achieved through trail planning Knowles said. The proposed Dream Trail running north-south completely through the Dishman Hills is another goal.

The plan could facilitate public access from Five Mile Prairie to the Little Spokane River.

Read on for more information about the plan.

Other goals for the Spokane County Regional Trail System include:

  • Create arterial trails and local links connecting parks, open spaces, neighborhoods, colleges and communities.
  • Connect with mass transit.
  • Identify corridors for conservation and guide trail planning to reduce impacts.

Demand for trails and trail activities has grown substantially since 1994 and is projected to continue growing over the next several decades, he said.

According to the plan, “Trails can facilitate active lifestyles that lead to a healthier community and those same trails also put Spokane County on the map as a destination for visitors and future residents.”

Since 2008, many aspects of the above strategies have been completed or are in various stages of planning, including:




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

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