Jan Quintrall

A question about High Drive planting strips

Jan Quintrall, Director of Business and Developer Services, No Phone Number Available

Friday, February 7, 2014 at 10 a.m.

A question about High Drive planting strips

In an effort to keep everyone current on the conversation about improvements to High Drive, we have been providing periodic updates. We recently received a suggestion from John Schram regarding the High Drive project that might be of interest to others. His email follows below along with my response.

City engineers are accepting feedback on the design options to highdriveproject@spokanecity.org. You can also follow project updates through this blog.

Letter sent to High Drive Project Team,

In a recent communication from Jan it was indicated that there had been a decision to eliminate parking in the entirety of Segment 2. With this change of design the right of way incursion to all bluff side homeowners has been reduced to 2’ in from the curb. I would ask that you reconsider the width of the grassy buffer strip (down to 3’ instead of 4’) and the sidewalk (down to 5’ instead of 6’). This minor change will not be a detriment for either snow removal mitigation or pedestrian usage. The reduction will allow for all utility poles to remain as is along with the surrounding mature landscaping. Many, if not most, of the utility poles are within 2’ of the existing curb and will create a significant disruption if moved.

Thank you for your consideration and thoughtful effort to date.

Response from Jan Quintrall:

Thanks for such a great question, it caused us to stand back and take a look at this option.

We have looked at the area where we are proposing a 4’ planting strip with a 6’ sidewalk (Manito Blvd. to just west of Grand). There are 8 poles that may need moving to accomplish this. Some of these are almost 2’ behind existing curb and we might allow them to remain and intrude a few inches into the new sidewalk. All of the poles have power on them so any moving would be at Avista’s expense and none of them would be difficult moves.

Based on past experience in other sections of the city we still think that any further narrowing the planting strip or sidewalk is a bad idea. Once the property owners actually have the 4’ planting strip they will be glad that it isn’t any narrower – both for appearance and maintenance. For reference the planting strip on 37th from Perry to Regal is 4’ wide. Our design standards require a 6.5’ planting strip and the comp plan requires a 5’ planting strip so we have already made reductions. With sidewalk on only one side of the street we still believe the 6’ width is appropriate, as did the majority of those who sent in comments after the second public meeting.

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