Strategy 6. Transportation & Infrastructure Improvement

Goal: To develop and maintain a fully-coordinated transportation and infrastructure concept that serves identified needs of neighborhood residents, area businesses & industry clusters, and interfaces with the plans of surrounding communities.

Objectives: To continue to identify Transportation and Infrastructure considerations that permit realistic neighborhood assessments and achievement of future development and infrastructure needs.

 

6.1 Objective:  Sidewalks, Alleys, and Roads – to establish priorities for intra-district transportation routes and funding for improvements when and where identified.

Actions:

 

6.1.1 Establish network of neighborhood contacts to work with residents of specific blocks and streets to get support for better and safer community uses. (Process, ongoing, with these outputs)

6.1.1.1 Support rejuvenation and expansion of the Neighborhood Block Watch System as the primary intra-community communication network for community improvement and development.  Establish grassroots links between the Block Watch network and the Neighborhood Councils.

6.1.1. 2. Establish this network’s input to the processes for improving local streets, roads, alleyways and other routes for potential non-automobile transportation uses.

6.1.1.3. Establish a means for the community’s education and feedback about these subjects to responsible community-level groups & organizations.

6.1.1.4. Identify the GHNEPA Neighborhood Councils jointly as the feedback agencies for these projects.

6.1.2. Consider as appropriate public policy non-traditional uses for rights-of-way and alleyways including pedestrian paths and bikeways for improving communications and travel within and among neighborhoods’ key locations and municipal services.

6.1.3. Establish an organization within or among the Neighborhood Councils to examine appropriate funding tools to make the improvements identified above.  (Project, with ongoing process thereafter)

This organization and the Councils together should partner with agencies that have common goals, such as the Spokane Health District, to justify grants and other efforts.  It should also consider various funding options for improvements, and generate support for such appropriate choices as:

6.1.3.1. Local Improvement Districts.

6.1.3.2. Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) and other grants

6.1.3.3. Encouraging congresspersons and state officials to secure national and state transportation Funds.

6.1.4. Support local organizations such as Complete Streets that pursue these funds and policy changes to permit pedestrian- and resident-friendly access to local destinations. (Process, to be followed as part of the ongoing community planning process)

 

6.2 Objective: Rail Spur for Industry – to secure the economic and community development advantages of rail service to the GHNEPA neighborhoods for both commercial shipping and personal transit needs. Actions:

 

6.2.1. Pursue existing neighborhood contacts with Washington Department of Transportation, County and City Road Departments and other local agencies, and the owners of local rail lines and properties, to: (current, ongoing process)

6.2.2. Assess current and future industrial needs and proximities to the rail spur.

6.2.3. Assess Right of Way (RoW) availability.

6.2.4. Begin a dialog with Burlington Northern and the Washington State Department of Transportation for RoW access.

6.2.5. Establish an ongoing planning organization within the community in order to (Project, leading to a process)

6.2.6. Generate a business model that would make use of the rail opportunities.

6.2.7. Research successful green manufacturing facilities (such as the Ford Motor Company) and others to make known to them the advantages and potential of GHNEPA area rail access and other property facilities.

 

6.3. Objective: Streetcars/Light Rail – to promote general transportation access to the Greater Hillyard area, its destination businesses and its public services. (Process, in conjunction with Strategy 10)

Actions:

 

6.3.1. For Public Transportation options: Identify as an additional planning role of an ongoing planning organization within the community, the appropriate use of community streets and rights of way for unconventional means of transportation, to include consideration of

6.3.1.1. New or historic uses of streets for streetcar lines, whether rail, bus or tired trolley lines for public options

6.3.1.2. New or unconventional uses of local properties and rights of way for economic development purposes, including public squares, market places or themed streets

6.3.1.3. Using public mass transit as one tool to increase population densities in selective neighborhood areas

6.3.2. For Localized Private Transportation options: Identify as an additional planning role of an ongoing planning organization within the community, the appropriate management of privately owned transportation options, as have become local solutions in other Cities, states and countries.  It should consider among other appropriate options,

6.3.2.1. Licensing fixed-route minivan or taxi services along fixed feeder routes that would serve intra-neighborhood needs and link to the larger public transportation routes.  These options reduce walking and weather exposure to the handicapped and elderly, and permit independence from auto ownership when implemented in metropolitan areas.  Demand for transport would regulate the numbers and competition for these services.  Licensure requirements and frequent safety inspections would regulate safety and emissions issues.

6.3.2.2. Establishing a transit transfer station in the GHNEPA area to permit visitors from outside the city to “park-n-ride” or to transfer from intra-county transit to local options as developed.

6.3.2.3. Encouraging a range of personalized programs and options that support residents’ decisions to self-transport: walking, cycling, small carts and similar (Segway-types) powered vehicles, volunteer services for elderly, handicapped and others , including electric carts & commuter vehicles, specific service vehicles and similar.

 

6.4. Objective: Intra-city Transportation – to Improve transportation and personal access for residents to local destinations and public services.  (Process, in conjunction with Strategies 5 and 10)

Actions:

 

6.4.1. Identify as an additional planning role of an ongoing planning organization within the community, the following specific functions:

6.4.1.1. To encourage innovative, Transit-Oriented Development. Create a Park & Ride facility in Hillyard area with capacity to include Localized transit options – residents’ bikes and bike lanes & trails, private taxis (both individual and shared), streetcars or wheeled trolleys, and light rail connections for both intra-city and intercity destinations..

6.4.1.2. To work with City, County and other agencies to systematically pave, upgrade and maintain transportation infrastructure.  This should start with emphasis on a City program to bring all intended infrastructures up to minimum standards.

6.4.1.3. To investigate and promote financing options as appropriate, considering Local Improvement Districts, Business Improvement Districts, and Public Development Authorities among any other options available. 

6.4.1.4. To develop community positions for approval regarding Growth Management Act policies regarding Infill development, i.e., promoting development where current infrastructure exists.

6.4.1.5. Groups involved: in the Actions above will include but not be limited to:

Spokane Transit Authority, City of Spokane, Spokane County

Neighborhood Councils and other Community Organizations, Small Business (GHBA), Washington Department of Transportation, Bicycle Advisory Board. State and Federal representatives and departments as appropriate.

 

6.5. Objective: Support an integrated network of paved pedestrian routes that neighborhood residents can utilize for transportation to the shopping, parks, schools, public transit, and other services.

Actions:

6.5.1. Utilize the Pedestrian Study done by Dr. Kerry Brooks for the GHNEPA area. Identify gaps in pedestrian routes and help with designing projects to fill in those gaps.

6.5.2 Partner with agencies to make this work happen: Spokane Regional Health District, Spokane Regional Transportation Council, City of Spokane, Washington State Department of Transportation, all neighborhood committees and area schools.

 

6.6. Objective: Other aspects of Transportation and Infrastructure Development – using the principles and organizations described above, the GHNEPA community should consider other aspects of neighborhood infrastructure improvement and development as appropriate to its future needs.

Actions:

6.6.1. The planning organizations described above should consider (but not be limited to) the impacts on future development of the following aspects of infrastructure

6.6.1.1. Community energy needs: gas, petroleum, electricity, renewable resources and solar power.

6.6.1.2. Community quality water and clean air needs: with emphasis on the dependable resources of each

6.6.1.3. Community communication needs: Digital, television, radio, various networks, and economies possible for area residents

6.6.1.4. Community Development needs: including residents’ health, transport, neighboring communities’ impact, employment, housing and recreational resources.

6.6.1.5. Community needs for integration into systems and networks of surrounding areas.

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