School Board Votes To Hear New Stadium Option

Dec 5, 2018

The Spokane school board has voted to listen to a new proposal for including a playing field in a downtown indoor sports complex.
Credit Spokane Public Schools

The Spokane school board says it will take one more step before deciding where a new high school sports stadium should be located.

The board voted Wednesday night to listen to a presentation by the Spokane Sports Commission.

Its president, Eric Sawyer, has floated the idea of installing a playing field inside a sports complex that’s destined for land just to the east of the Spokane Arena.

The proposal is seen as a way to keep alive the idea of a downtown sports stadium and perhaps to save money on the project. Last month in an advisory vote, nearly two in three voters said no to a downtown stadium, in favor of the Albi Stadium current site in northwest Spokane.

The board hopes to hear more about the commission’s plan at its meeting next week. And then, members agreed, it’s time to get on with deciding where the new stadium should be built. The bond issue approved by voters last month included about $30 million for a sports stadium.

Two of the five board members voted to move forward now with the Albi Stadium site. Sue Chapin and Jerrall Haynes say it’s important to keep the trust of voters. Haynes says, if they disregarded the will of the voters this time, the people might vote against future school bond issues.

Chapin says, of the 144 precincts where people voted, only 17 supported the downtown site, and all of them were in high income neighborhoods.