Staff Reporter 

Medical Lake council hears future plans for West Plains transit network


Spokane Transit Authority presented its long-term plans for regional transportation, which includes creating easier access to Medical Lake, at the Oct. 2 meeting of the Medical Lake City Council.

The plan includes upgrading the Medical Lake exit on I-90 with a transit center for STA’s planned high performance transit network. The network would exist as an overlay on top of the current transportation system, improving on existing services.

While the network doesn’t have any existing funding sources, representatives said it was important to have a plan in place for future growth.

STA director of operations Steve Blaska said STA’s current funding model is viable through 2015, resulting from service cuts. Last year’s cuts made a large impact on Medical Lake, although he said it was “survival service.”

The transit center at the Medical Lake freeway interchange is very likely in part because the Department of Transportation is looking to improve the exit in order to match the large increase of traffic.

“The Department of Transportation will do something with that interchange,” Blaska said. “This is our chance to be a part of it.”

The council pressed STA representatives on the future of service in Medical Lake, taking in consideration the previous cuts made to service in the city.

City Administrator Doug Ross said the city’s SCOPE volunteers hoped to have the police station’s doors open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. two days a week. Volunteers have recently begun to work with Spokane County Sheriff’s Office officers with various front office tasks to alleviate some of their workload.

The council will hold a budget workshop Tuesday, Oct. 16 in the council chambers, open to the public. A special time of 5:30 p.m. has been designated to allow more time for discussion on next year’s budget.

James Eik can be reached at


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