January 16, 2014 in Washington Voices

Spokane Valley holding hearing on sale of land for new library

By The Spokesman-Review

Plans for a new library and expanded city park complex in Spokane Valley could soon be starting the next chapter.

City leaders are preparing to sell 2.82 acres of undeveloped land at Sprague Avenue and Herald Road to the Spokane County Library District, which wants to build a new, more accessible Valley branch at the site.

A public hearing on the land sale is set for 6 p.m. Tuesday at Spokane Valley City Council chambers, 11707 E. Sprague Ave. The City Council must first declare the acreage “surplus” before being able to sell it.

A combined library and expanded Balfour Park complex is seen by many as a way to help vitalize the heart of Spokane Valley.

Construction is reliant on voter approval of a $22 million bond measure in April. The bond would pay for the new Spokane Valley branch, a new neighborhood branch on Conklin Road near Shelley Lake and improvements to the existing Argonne Library.

The city of Spokane Valley purchased the site, which was part of an overall $2.5 million 8-acre acquisition in 2012, and agreed to sell the 2.82 acres needed for the new library branch and use the remainder to expand Balfour Park. The previous landowner, businessman Jack Pring, didn’t want to sell just part of the land, so the city bought the entire tract after reaching agreement with the library district for the portion needed for the new branch.

Under the purchase agreement, the library district is expected to pay the city nearly $840,000 for the 2.82 acres.

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