Local News

Snow makes for wintry obstacle course in downtown Spokane

City works to clear downtown roads

SPOKANE, Wash. - Plows will make their way through downtown Spokane both Tuesday and Wednesday night. If cars aren't cleared off the streets, they'll be towed or bermed in.

A lot of cars were still parked on downtown streets Tuesday evening. They have to be gone before the plows can move through. While that will be a pain for anyone driving to find their car in the morning, clear streets will be a welcome sight.

Still, many of the downtown businesses dealt with construction all summer long. Now they're dealing with a wintry mess. It's been a cold, snowy winter and the snow just keeps piling up. It's making getting around Spokane a wintry obstacle course.

With snow piles rivaling cars, many people are opting to just stay in. That's what Next Door Espresso in downtown Spokane is experiencing. Owner Ava Haasse says people aren't braving the snow, much like they avoided construction, to make it to the sandwich and coffee shop. Hassee had one worker come in several hours late Tuesday because she can't afford wages with slower business.

"Nobody wants to go across the street. Do you want to walk in the yucky muck to get some food or would you rather stay nice and warm and cozy? That's pretty much it. It's kind of sad, but what can you do? Today's picking up just a little bit better," Haasse said.

While we know that downtown will be plowed, when will they make it to your street? Check out the City of Spokane's useful tool that breaks down plow plans. Keep in mind, a full-city plow takes up to four days.

As for downtown, plows will start at 10 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Our primary goal is to get arterials, emergency routes, over by the hospitals, open up those hill areas so people can get safely to where they are going,” says Julie Happy with the City of Spokane. “You'll see them plow and try to get it all out. If there's a lot of snow, it will berm in the center. They will break that berm down and try to melt it and then we will bring in trucks and haul it away.” 

There's no street parking between 2-6 a.m. If your car is parked downtown during that time, it could either be towed or plowed in. If you need a place to park--the city is offering free parking for downtown residents at Riverfront Parking lots 1,2,3,5, and 6 from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m. for the next two days.