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Spokane's new downtown stadium reaches a construction milestone

School and community leaders sign the "topping beam" for the new downtown Spokane sports stadium during a ceremony Thursday.
Doug Nadvornick/Spokane Public Radio
School and community leaders sign the "topping beam" for the new downtown Spokane sports stadium during a ceremony Thursday.

Four months and counting until the anticipated opening for Spokane’s new downtown sports stadium.

On Thursday, construction crews laid the last structural beam atop the frame of the facility. During a brief ceremony, dignitaries, including Paul Read, who is the vice chair of the Spokane Public Facilities District, signed the beam before a crane lifted it to its designated home.

Stadium beam laying video.mov

“This really is significant. There are very few times as a community where we can really make big decisions about the future that generations to come will look back on and say, ‘Wow, that was visionary.’ This is one of those times, at least in my opinion," Read said.

The district will operate the new stadium, which sits on land between The Podium and Veterans' Memorial Arena.

Read says it will be a good complement to its two neighboring venues.

“This north bank, with the arena, with this fabulously-successful, already, Podium, and now this great stadium, is going to become a sports and entertainment district that really will be the envy, I think, of most communities in the country," he said.

Shawn Jordan, the school district’s chief operating officer, says the construction schedule is on time.

“We’re hoping for the end of September so that we can get our fall sports, football and soccer, into the stadium and that’s what we’re planning right now. Right now all indicators are that we’re on that schedule.”

The facility will seat five thousand people for sporting events, with room for another five to seven thousand for concerts and other events.

The school district is negotiating the facility name with local Native American tribes.

One of the Northwest's most seasoned reporters is returning to his SPR roots. Doug Nadvornick will be heard frequently on KPBX and KSFC reporting on local news.