North Notes
Spokane-North Rotary Club
April 3, 2023
            April 10: Noon, lunch at the Bark . Speaker: Mark Pond, ML/S Business Research Librarian, SPL.
            April 17: Noon, lunch at the Bark. Speaker: Ben Small, Launch Northwest (Innovia).
            April 24: Noon, lunch at the Bark.  Speaker: Melinda Keberle club president update.
Hipperson Retirement Party
           Recently members of Spokane North and some of their spouses gathered at the home of Terry and Michelle Fossum to enjoy a meal together and to honor the many years of service which Brian gave to Rotary and specifically to Spokane North.
           Lenore Romney and Nancy Hanson found several memorable facts in the archived history of the club, and we all enjoyed looking at the various pictures and hearing about the various activities of Spokane North in the past
           Here are some pictures which Michelle took that evening:
Downtown Stadium progressing nicely
            It was more a “dirty shoes” project than a Rotary “dirty hands” project as club members toured the massive Downtown Stadium on April 3.
            Rustin Hall, a principal for ALSC architects, led a hard-hat tour of the massive venue which will house football, soccer and concerts.  He added: “This is an active construction site.  Nothing is finished yet.”  That was obvious as members climbed over the rock and dirt terrain skirting the north side of the project.
            “Spokane is a very special place,” said Hall, who has 39 years of architectural experience. Thus he brings a warm knowledge and vibe for the expansive concrete and steel structure at 708 W. Boone.
            Among the Downtown Stadium’s key numbers:
            Capacity: 5,500 seats, including suites and boxes.  Larger crowds for high school football usually total 1,500 to 2,000, Hall said.
            Possible expansion: Another 5,000 seats. (“If someone wants to pay for it,” Hall said.)
            Field size: 44,850 square feet. Surface is artificial turf.
            Concourse size: 15,530 square feet.
            Seating and concourse combined: 94,900 square feet.
            Press box: 5,530 square feet.
            Number of locker rooms: 4, to accommodate football high school double headers.
            School colors: Lighted areas will highlight each team colors when one of the five GSL teams, NC, LC, Ferris, Rogers and Shadle Park, play as the home team.
            Total Stadium Cost: $39 million.
            Among the challenges:
            Rock.  “With anything you build downtown, you have to deal with rock,” Hall said, adding 150 holes were drilled on the stadium site to find the quantity of rock they would have to deal with.
            Parking. “That (amount of parking, especially when multiple venues, including Civic Theater, are active at one time) is the first question, Hall said.
            “But we are adding more parking stalls than we had,” Hall said, with 400 or more across Boone at the former Value Village site and other open spaces.
            Access: Hall said a large drop-off area will be provided for patrons who can’t walk to parking areas.
            Viewpoints: Sight-lines were carefully designed to “see the field from every spot in the arena and to avoid ‘hidey hole’ spots where teens and others could loiter.  Angles were designed to accommodate both views from the gridiron and the soccer pitch, he said.
            Concerts: Hall expects 15 shows a year.  Three loading docks were placed for traveling concert events. “Most big shows use 12 semis, but we will have to rotate the loading with the three stalls,” Hall said.
            Plans to rebuild Albi Stadium in Northwest Spokane were “half-way done” when the school district and others decided to build the Downtown Stadium.
            Hall, who chairs the Spokane Sports Commission, said the stadium, along with the adjacent Podium and Veterans Arena, are a good investment.
            “Sports are money,” he said, “the heads and beds (involving sports)  generate $110  million” a year in lodging, dining and other items. The new stadium will have 38 places to sell food and other items, he said.
            Hall said up to 100 workers from Garco crews are finishing the major construction work, hoping to finish that work in several weeks.  Then up to 300 workers will finish the detail work, he said.
            “We’ll be playing football here this fall,” Hall said.
            The Joe Albi Stadium capacity was 28,000, he said, adding that rarely did crowds get any larger than a few thousand patrons.  Elvis Presley did play at Albi.  So did the WSU’s Cougars for the alternating Apple Cups and years until the Pullman stadium was rebuilt.
            Now the venerable statue of Joe Albi on a bench will be moved to the southeast side of the Downtown Stadium.
            Old Joe’s site won’t face the field, Hall said, but the heirs are fine with that, he said, as old memories mix with new
memories as the games start this fall.
            Bulletin editors: Chuck Rehberg and Sandy Fink