Congestion in downtown Spokane is likely to get a little worse today and Thursday with the closure of major intersections for paving work on West Second Avenue.
Monroe and Lincoln streets at Second will be closed today until late afternoon while a construction crew lays down a base layer of asphalt as part of the reconstruction of Second.
On Thursday, Walnut and Maple streets will be closed until late afternoon for paving.
Second will be closed from Howard to Jefferson streets today until late afternoon, and from Jefferson to Sunset Boulevard on Thursday, again until late afternoon.
Second has been limited to one lane of traffic for weeks. The project began Aug. 2.
On Friday, crews will continue paving work, but Second and its major intersections will be open, said Ann Deasy, city spokeswoman.
During the closures, the city recommends that motorists use Washington, Stevens, Division and Browne streets for north-south traffic.
East-west traffic should go to Boone, First or Third avenues, the city said.
Boone is being recommended to keep drivers away from any potential traffic tie-ups downtown.
“I would suggest avoiding the downtown area entirely,” Deasy said.
In addition, residents in the Browne’s Addition neighborhood have complained that drivers are using residential streets there to avoid the construction and congestion on Second at Walnut and Maple streets.
Deasy said motorists cutting through the neighborhood need to be careful because of the high number of pedestrians.
“We want citizens to be safe,” she said.
Completion of the project is expected in early to mid-November. Additional closures may occur later this fall.
At $2.1 million, the project involves reconstruction of Second and installation of a new 12-inch water main as well as new catch basins.
The street work is being financed by a 2004 voter-approved bond measure, which has financed major work throughout the city in recent years, including work this year on Nevada Street, 37th Avenue, Wellesley Avenue, Northwest Boulevard and Lincoln Street.