March 17, 2014 in City

Trip reduction program bringing ‘undriver’ licenses to Spokane

By The Spokesman-Review
 
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Everybody’s heard of a driver’s license, but how many people know about the “undriver” license?

A neighborhood group in the Ballard area of Seattle came up with the idea of issuing undriver licenses as a fun way to encourage alternative transportation.

Now, the Spokane County Commute Trip Reduction program is planning to bring undriver licenses here.

County commissioners on Tuesday approved a resolution declaring Undriving Inc., of Seattle, as a sole-source provider, allowing the county to do business with the group without going to bid.

Commuter trip reduction officials plan to offer the undriver licenses at community events, schools and worksite visits.

The licenses allow holders to express their views of alternate transportation by using different props in their undriver license photos. One version of the undriver license says “Planet Earth” where the state’s name would go.

The licenses are accompanied by a pledge to reduce automobile use through walking, bicycling, transit or carpooling.

The county received an air-quality and congestion mitigation grant to help fund the $8,000 program through the Undriving organization.

In a memorandum to commissioners, county engineers said the undriver license “creates a positive identity and offers people a nonjudgmental way to talk with others about reducing their car use.”

On the West Side, more than 12,000 undriver licenses have been issued since 2007.

Washington passed its commuter trip reduction law in 1991 and then updated it in 2006. It requires agencies and worksites with more than 100 employees to develop programs to reduce single-occupancy vehicle trips.

Subsidized bus passes, vanpools, off-site work arrangements and off-hour work schedules are some of the main methods being used.

Participants who keep track of their alternative transportation choices are eligible for monthly prizes.

For more information, go to mycommute.org.

Francis bridge work

Work crews are returning to the Francis Avenue bridge project east of Market Street today.

The intersection of Francis and Freya Street will get a temporary traffic signal starting today. Work will occur from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for about a month. Flaggers will control traffic. Some lane restrictions will result in slower traffic. Drivers are encouraged to find alternate routes.

Work has also resumed on future freeway bridges over BNSF Railway lines in that area.

CdA arterial work

In Coeur d’Alene, work starts today on a street, sidewalk and traffic light project to transform Third Street downtown from a one-way southbound into a two-way arterial from Front to Lakeside avenues.

Traffic will be detoured around Sherman Avenue at Third through the week. The street upgrades are part of the McEuen Park and Front Avenue reconstruction.

During the work, east-west traffic will be rerouted to Lakeside at Second and Fifth streets. Traffic will not be allowed to cross Third at Sherman Avenue, and pedestrian traffic will be restricted. Some on-street parking will remain available. Access to all businesses will be maintained.

Spokane lane closures

Regular drivers on Hamilton Street in the Logan Neighborhood will be pleased to know that the closure of one of the northbound lanes at Mission Avenue this Wednesday is so workers can repair the photo system for catching drivers who run the red light there. The work is planned from 5 a.m. to noon.

The same work is occurring on Division Street at Francis Avenue on Wednesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Two lanes will be closed during the work.

Also, Division Street near Sharp Avenue will close Friday from 9 a.m. to noon for a commercial building project there.

Also in the city, a northbound lane on Lincoln Street at Sprague Avenue will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. for building work.

Lincoln also will have another lane closure in the northbound lane at Mallon Avenue on Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for utility installation.

Avista crews will be closing two middle lanes of southbound Stevens Street at Spokane Falls Boulevard from Tuesday through Thursday.

Also, crane work on Browne Street at Second Avenue will force closure of two southbound lanes on Monday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Valley lane closures

In Spokane Valley, northbound Pines Road north of Mansfield Avenue will be reduced to one lane today from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. for driveway approach work.

Eastbound Sprague Avenue at Conklin Road will be reduced to one lane today from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


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