Friday, August 22, 2008

Gieger Spur is right on track

It's taken a few years to plan and finance the Geiger Spur, and now county officials say it should be open for business soon. (Read the story here). That is fantastic news for the 400 workers whose jobs rely on access to the rail line.

A whole lot of people deserve a great deal of credit for saving that spur, including the Greater Spokane Inc., the Spokane County commissioners and various elected officials at the state and federal levels.

After the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center, the US Air Force decided that it no longer wanted the Geiger Spur to cut across Fairchild Air Force Base. The base used the track in the past for weapon shipments, but no longer needed the spur under its current refueling mission. The Air Force was simply going to abandon the track, until the county stepped in with plans to reroute the track around the base.

The commissioners worked with the economic development leaders in the community and the federal government to save the spur, and the rail dependent jobs in Airway Heights.

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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.