County, State, City and School Officials Celebrate
the Reopening of Sullivan Road to Traffic
On November 3, 2022, Spokane County officials were joined by others from the State of Washington, City of Spokane Valley, and East Valley School District for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the reopening of Sullivan Road to traffic. The mile-long stretch of Sullivan Road connects with Bigelow Gulch and Forker Road and represents an important component of the Phase 6 project ($6,449,699) which is part of the extensive Bigelow Gulch/Forker Road Urban Connector ($11,806,000). While Sullivan Road is now open to traffic, Phase 6 is scheduled for completion next spring.
Spokane County Commissioner Josh Kerns commented on the partnerships that have made the Urban Connector a reality. “The entire corridor project has required extensive collaboration and coordination between the County, Washington State agencies, and the City of Spokane Valley. When it is completed in 2023, it will be the culmination of 18 years of work, phase-by-phase, and millions of dollars invested in traffic safety,” Kerns said.
Commissioner Al French added that the Urban Connector wouldn’t have been possible without the support of various federal and state agencies. “Spokane County has received funding from the Washington State Freight Mobility and Strategic Investment Board – all the way to the U.S. Department of Transportation. The recognition and support has simply been outstanding,” French said.
Commissioner Mary Kuney said that since Phase 6 cuts through property belonging to the East Valley School District, she was especially pleased to be involved in working with the district. “The safety of students, parents and families was uppermost in our minds during the planning process. It truly was a team effort,” Kuney said.
Those sentiments were echoed by East Valley School District Superintendent Brian Talbott and City of Spokane Valley Mayor Pam Haley.
Beginning in 1997, Spokane County saw daily traffic increasing on Bigelow
Gulch and Forker Roads, especially freight traffic. To make Bigelow Gulch safer and reduce traffic congestion, Spokane County developed a plan to improve the roadway and provide a traffic corridor from north Spokane to Spokane Valley.
Since 2005, the Bigelow Gulch/Forker Road Urban Connector has steadily progressed in phases that have straightened and widened both Bigelow Gulch Road and Forker Road to meet the objectives of improved safety, as well as support state and regional freight mobility initiatives.
Funding for the project has been provided in part by the U.S. Department of Transportation-Federal Highway Administration, Washington State Department of Transportation, Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board and the County Road Administration Board.
For more information, go to www.spokanecounty.org/2724/Bigelow-GulchForker-Rd-Urban-Connector.