This year will see the completion of Spokane's Downtown Bike Network, a loop and spurs of bikeways for the city's core. For the past few years, downtown cyclists have been able to ride on a few bike lanes and shared roadways (and the infamous "sharrows"), but by fall the whole shebang will be complete.
Less than a month ago, some city staffers presented the second phase of the network to small crowd at the Community Building on Main Avenue. This is what they saw.
We'll start first with a general map of the downtown showing where new bike lanes will be added.
This next map shows how car lanes will change this year.
Now, here are some renderings of what the intersections will look like. This first illustration shows the intersection of Main and Washington. Auntie's Bookstore is on the left, and we're facing east.
Further east, this one shows the intersection of Main and Division. For orientation, the University District is straight ahead, and Zola's would be on the left.
Now, we'll head down Spokane Falls Boulevard, heading west. This illustration shows Spokane Falls and Washington. Notice the world's largest little red wagon on the right.
Finally, here we are at Spokane Falls and Post, which is the street made of brick downtown. At the end of the block, the bike lane will peter out and cyclists will have to join vehicular traffic to continue. This loss of lane caused some consternation at the open house last month, as some older riders said they could not keep up with traffic and would be forced to ride on the sidewalk, which is illegal downtown.
It will cost $224,000 to complete the Downtown Bike Network. It is being paid for with funds from the federal Congestion Management and Air Quality program.