South University District Sub-Area Planning

October 2 Open House
The project team is using results from the online survey and Community Design Workshop held this summer to shape a draft vision and goals for future district development that will guide any proposed changes to zoning or development standards that come out of the process. In order to fine‑tune the vision and goals, we are inviting anyone interested to an open house at PRIDE Prep Charter School, on Wednesday, October 2, from 4‑7 p.m. City staff and consultants from MAKERS will be on hand to discuss some of the ideas behind the draft vision and goals, answer questions, and hear your thoughts on different alternative concepts for the South University District. You are welcome to drop in and visit us at any time during the open house. We look forward to seeing you!

What We've Heard – Survey and Workshop Results
Thank you to everyone who took the online survey this summer (we had over 300 responses!) or attended the Community Design Workshop on July 30‑31. To find out what we heard from the survey and workshop, take a look at the Community Engagement Summary prepared by our consultants from MAKERS Architecture and Urban Design. To dig deeper into the results, check out more detailed breakdowns of results in the "Related Documents" section below.


South University District area

The South University District area, within the East Central Neighborhood Council boundary, is experiencing new growth and investment, and emerging as a true “gateway,” with close access to many of the fastest-changing parts of Spokane:

  • Just east of the Downtown core
  • Just south of the University District campuses of Gonzaga, WSU, and EWU
  • Just north of the concentration of medical services and hospitals on the lower South Hill
  • Just west of the Sprague Union district

Public and private projects to revitalize the University District have been underway for more than a decade and the recent opening of the University District Gateway Bridge marks the beginning of a new chapter for the district, particularly the area south of the bridge landing. The upcoming Catalyst Building, with 150,000 square feet of research and classroom space, the investment by the City and University District Public Development Authority in Sprague Phase II streetscape improvements, additional service by Spokane Transit Authority, additional planned connections to regional trail systems such as the Ben Burr Trail and the Centennial Trail, and the potential for several more public and private development projects in the vicinity of the south bridge landing are making the South University District a destination in its own right.

Growth of the student enrollment and research activities at adjacent university campuses and increased demand for centrally located places to live, work, and play should drive additional growth over the longer term. Taking place amidst these investments, subarea planning for the South University District provides a timely opportunity to ensure that development and redevelopment occurs within the district as envisioned by key stakeholders and the community at large. In particular, this planning process will make sure that development regulations in the subarea align with goals for increased housing and innovation sector employment, while allowing for the continued growth of the legacy businesses that have anchored the district over the years.


Planning for the South University District subarea will be a coordinated community effort of City staff, local stakeholders, key public representatives, and technical staff from partner agencies. A continuous public engagement strategy will be key to the planning process.

Related Documents

Results of the Summer 2019 online survey and Community Design Workshop

A few of the key previous plans that have focused on the South University District:

  • East Sprague
  • South University District area by the Gateway Bridge

Contact Information

Please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information or with questions. Our dedicated South University District subarea planning staff are listed below.

Christopher Green
Assistant Planner, Neighborhood & Planning Services

Danielle Olson
Planning Assistant, Neighborhood & Planning Services

Items of Interest