SRTC hosted the first of two public open houses yesterday on our long term transportation plan, Horizon 2040. We had a good turnout with lots of people showing up before the meeting even started and got lots of great input.

With the meeting located in Cheney, a lot of people wanted to talk about highway 904 that goes from I90 into Cheney. It is currently a two lane roadway with a lot of traffic from staff and students going to Eastern Washington University. There is a project included in Horizon 2040 that recommends widening it and adding a center turn lane between 2021 and 2030. So, here’s some of what we heard last night:

  • Move the proposed 904 widening project up sooner than 2021 at the earliest (heard this more than once).
  • Raise the speed limit on 904 to 60 mph and shorten the 40 mph zone in and out of Four Lakes on the south end, starting the 40 mph zone about 300 feet before 6th Street (don’t worry- if you plan to make comments you don’t have to be this specific)
  • Don’t widen 904 as it could encourage speeding and higher accident rates. This came from a gentleman who said he’d been in one serious accident on 904 and narrowly avoided two others.
  • Build an arterial corridor from 904 to the airport so Cheney residents can access available job opportunities.
  • 904 is dangerous for garbage trucks and buses. There isn’t much room to pull over to pick up people or refuse on the sides and other drivers pass at high speeds, or pass trucks and buses on the right.
  • Put up more speed limit signs in general. It’s hard to tell where speeds change.
  • Build Hayford Road underground and under the new runway when Spokane International Airport builds their proposed third runway.
  • Build right turn lanes on highways like 904 and Highway 2 through Airway Heights. People trying to turn into driveways and businesses cause backups behind them.

And finally, one woman confided to me that her aunt used to purposely drive close behind semis and buses in order to inhale their fumes. She said the aunt was a little strange. I suspect that may have had something to do with all those years of sniffing fumes. I’m not sure why people tell me this kind of thing but I love hearing it, really makes my night interesting.

Don’t worry, if you missed last night’s meeting, there’s another chance to attend a Horizon 2040 open house. We’ll host another one next Wednesday, Nov. 6, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Northeast Community Center, 4001 N. Cook, Spokane, WA 99207.

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