Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Some Leaders Questioning Need for NSC

Some local leaders say we shouldn’t spend money to build the North Spokane Corridor because it’s not needed, will contribute to pollution, and cause area tax increases. Supporters of the freeway counter that it will divert truck traffic off local roads, provide right of way for a light rail system in the future, and bring new jobs and industries to the area. Click the link below to read the Feb. 7 Spokesman-Review article about the freeway and give us your opinion. Does Spokane need the North Spokane Corridor or is it time to give up the dream?



amg1963 said...

Please! Just visit the west side of the state for a few days and you won't doubt the need for the NSC. Continued growth of businesses and the influx of new residents into the north end will put more congestion on already congested roads. Division is crowded and Francis Ave at rush hour is a slog. Gridlock kills productivity, quality of life and forces people to stay closer to home when shopping or seeking entertainment options. Spokane is a charming, vibrant, growing city. I believe the north end deserves to be linked to the rest of the community with a freeway--sooner than later.

jive turkey said...

well we could just stop the development and have the half built on and off ramps/overpasses in the mead erea and we will just pay for the division street and market street asphalt to be re done every year due to semi truck traffic. i mean they have only been talking about the ns freeway since my father was 18 . why finish what we started? are you for real? we already started building it just get the lead out and finish the job.. it's not like it will be another parking garage

EvilElf said...

Please terminate the North-South Freeway now. All it will do is encourage people to live further away from an urban core.

In fact, we who choose to live in the urban core are going to subsidize those who don't, if we have to pay to build and maintain this expensive, high-maintenance roadway.

It is unneeded.

If it takes you too much time to come into Spokane, move to Spokane.

A North South Freeway will encourage more sprawl and will, in fact, be counterproductive to its intended design.

But, if you really want it, make it a private venture and put a tollbooth on it. Let the so-called "free market" work its magic.

Here is some more food for thought.

SRTC Staff said...

Jive Turkey has a point. If we quit now, what happens to the bridges and overpasses that have already been built? Do they just become a really expensive skateboard park? I mean, we're talking millions and millions of wasted dollars.

The toll option keeps coming up again. While toll roads are commonly accepted in other places, experience has taught that they don't fly here. Traffic on the Maple Street Bridge had a big increase when the toll came off, and wasn't it only 25 cents? You wouldn't think that would put a big dent in anyone's wallet.

As for urban sprawl, my take is that it's already happening, and is going to do so with or without the NSC. People are just willing to drive and while we can educate some people away from it, there are always going to be others who don't care.

jeff said...

Hi Evilelf. I followed your link, and while I can understand this argument, I can also see that there is a lot of mis-information out there concerning the N/S corridor.

The argument for abandoning the project for a light rail does make some sense in terms of moving people. But we are also faced with moving a tremendous increase of freight through our region, and we currently do not have an efficient north south route for that aspect of transportation.

That is why this project is being built as a multi-modal corridor, which means it is being designed and built to facilitate various modes of transportation.

As the freeway portion of the corridor is being built, right-of-way is being purchsed for a n/s light rail extention, as well as stand alone bike lanes, and park&ride lots for transit.

Hopefully, by the time we get the freeway portion built out to I-90, the east/west light rail route will have been established and all we will have to do is tie into that system.

Jeff Selle

Greg H said...

Anyone who has commuted the major north - south arterials during busy times should agree we need the NSC to alleviate through traffic to allow others quick access to businesses. Growth will continue to occur north and matters will be far worse before the NSC is completed. This is a good example of advance planning that was ignored too much the past 20 years; delaying or stopping it is ignorant or naive hoping for a better solution.

MK 4 GTI said...

Spokane recieved it's start as a transportation hub, and continues to serve that purpose. Being the heart of the inland empire, several federal cross country highways converge in Spokane. Thru traffic on U.S. Highway 2, and U.S. highway 395 are forced to use Division street from I-90 to the "Y". This is the main issue here, to join the 21st century. This new century is all about "just in time" deliverys, and trucks are the backbone of the economy. To get onto division, first the trucks have to squeeze under the Sprauge & Division railroad underpass. I can personally attest to the fact that many trucks WILL NOT FIT under the bridge. I have had to have trucks follow my taxi to get around them.
bury your heads in the sand all you want, however the NSC must be built.

Chattaroy, WA

KMPO Staff said...

Greg & Nick, you make some good points. I don't know if you are aware of it, but there is a regional effort underway to look at the feasibility of developing a full blown "global gateway" for trade in our region. The project is called the Inland Pacific Hub, and the first phase of the feasibility analysis is currently out to bid. As this project develops, you can check in on this blog for detailed updates.

About SRTC

SRTC is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Spokane County. Urbanized areas with populations exceeding 50,000 people are required to have an MPO. SRTC was formed to address the county's transportation planning needs. It provides coordination in planning between the public, cities, small towns, the county, the state, transit providers, and tribes.

SRTC offers services including transportation monitoring, transportation modeling, census information analysis, travel demand forecasting, historical traffic count analysis, geographic information systems, and trip generation rates.