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Councilwoman Imagines a Spokane With Golf Carts | Politics

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Councilwoman Imagines a Spokane With Golf Carts
Councilwoman Imagines a Spokane With Golf Carts

When cash is short in the economy, the community gets a little creative to make sure everyone gets what they need around town. Two business owners in Hillyard sparked the interest of council member Amber Waldref for their idea about electric golf carts.

“I heard this rumor in Hillyard,” Waldref shared over the phone. “They want to promote green energy, so what about golf carts?”

It’s still in the brainstorming stages, but the idea has been handed off to City’s legal department to see if there’s a place for electric golf carts in Spokane neighborhoods.

Waldref asked, “What if we had cart zones?” She continued: “Especially for folks who have a hard time getting around and live close to town.”

She referenced last year’s 44-1 vote in the Washington State Legislature approving a measure to allow golf carts on public roads in cities that would allow it. Regionally, Cheney is one of those cities that do allow it. Waldref wants to see if it can happen here in Spokane.

Most golf carts are topped off at a speed of 15 mph. Some 25 mph. Waldref understands there would be some cons because of their capped speed.

“We can’t have a golf cart in a 30 mph zone,” Waldref explained. She continued, “The only issue would be if you’re in side streets. How do you cross busy streets?”

Waldref wondered what Hillyard would be like if golf carts were legal. She joined State Rep. Andy Billig on a golf cart back in October and they were driven to the nearby Safeway to get a sense of the possibilities.

Spokane is not a forgiving climate. Waldref noted that it was a little chilly out there. Obviously this could not be a year-round option for transportation due to winter snow. Any golfer could tell you golf carts are not warm in the later months.

“Hopefully in the next month or so we can see what we can do legally - maybe launch a pilot project,” Waldref added.

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