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Tuesday, June 2, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Getting There

When will the city sweep the gravel from bike lanes?

Signs mark the bike lane along 29th Avenue in Spokane. (Christopher Anderson)
Signs mark the bike lane along 29th Avenue in Spokane. (Christopher Anderson)

There's a letter to the editor in today's paper about bike lanes and gravel. I couldn't agree more that riding in a dirty, rock-filled bike lane is no fun. In fact, the shoulder of one of the roads I ride regularly was just swept and I nearly wept with joy.

Here's the letter:

I have been doing quite a bit of bicycle riding this spring and like a lot of riders would like to appreciate the new bike lanes that are showing up around Spokane. Except they are a waste of space, planning and money. Most of them are impossible to use.

Like other things that the city is involved with, the intention may be good but the follow-through sucks. There is still a winter’s worth of gravel, rocks and broken glass in the bike lanes put there by cars. No surprise cars put that type of junk to the sides and center of roads. A great example is Rowan Avenue, west of Ash. New pavement and new unusable bike lanes full of gravel.

Here’s the hang-up, the city needs to clean the streets. I live on the North Side and have yet to see an actual street cleaner this year, although I am sure there have been some somewhere. Maybe instead of using all of his time with constant political posturing our mayor could actually do something for the citizens of Spokane. Go borrow a street cleaner and do some actual work.

Larry Reisnouer


What do you think? Does the city neglect cleaning bike lanes? Or is it simply the time of year when cyclists have to ride through some lingering winter rubbish?

Nicholas Deshais
Joined The Spokesman-Review in 2013. He is the urban issues reporter, covering transportation, housing, development and other issues affecting the city. He also writes the Getting There transportation column and The Dirt, a roundup of construction projects, new businesses and expansions. He previously covered Spokane City Hall.

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