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City wants to upgrade Greenacres roads

Spokane Valley is preparing to apply for grants to upgrade three roads in Greenacres where new development has greatly increased the amount of traffic on local roads.

Improvements to Flora Road and Broadway Avenue, as well as a proposed connection between Greenacers and Indiana near the Valley Mall, will make up the city’s applications for road funds awarded by the state in 2009.

Flora would be widened to a three-lane road with sidewalks and bike lanes, similar to the new section of Barker Road, Public Works Director Neil Kersten said at Tuesday’s council meeting. That project is scheduled for 2009.

Broadway also would be widened to three lanes between Wal-Mart and Flora in 2012.

“It’s related to all the growth that’s occurring there,” from existing and new retailers, Kersten said.

Councilman Rich Munson asked why the city will narrow the road east of Wal-Mart, and Kersten said that traffic predictions show that three lanes will be adequate because most of the stores’ traffic goes to Sullivan.

Indiana would be extended through private property from where it dead ends now east of Sullivan to connect with Mission Avenue in Greenacres.

The vacant land is owned by a subsidiary of the Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review.

The project would be dependent on the property owner paying part of the cost of the road, Kersten said.

Presently, people in Greenacres wishing to go to the mall have to cross Interstate 90 to Broadway, then cross it again at Sullivan to get there.

The council instructed the city’s staff to apply for the grants, which come from a limited amount of money allocated for certain types of road projects in this part of the state.

Councilman Bill Gothmann also commented that the Flora and Broadway projects would provide a good connection for bicyclists and pedestrians in the neighborhood and on the Centennial Trail.

In other council news, Aug. 28 was set as the deadline for the city to receive written comments on the city’s new development code.

Also, the council gave its tentative approval to pay off its remaining debt on the police precinct building it purchased from Spokane County last year.

City Manager Dave Mercier said the deal will provide funds for the county to help shore up its flagging budget and will save Spokane Valley money in the long run because of interest that can be earned on the funds that are not tied up in the agreement to pay the building off over several years.


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