The Spokesman-Review (Spokane) : 2019-02-11

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NORTTHWESTT MONDAY, February 11, 2019 THEN AND NOW THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW PHOTO ARCHIVE 1947: The Alberta Apartments, built in 1910 at the height of Spokane’s early boom years, was a nondescript residence hotel at Second Avenue and Madison Street. The area around the hotel deteriorated until, like the rest of the surrounding block, it became known for drug dealing, prostitution and gang activity. Since 1990, the building has been used for housing the homeless, drug treatment and other services. Alberta Apartments In the ’90s, drug dealing, prostitution, gang-related crime and graffiti on East First Avenue was common around the Otis Hotel and the Coach House restaurant near the Alberta. The police and locals just called the area “the Block.” Starting around 1996, cops cracked down on these crimes that discouraged visitors from walking the downtown streets. Nonprofits like the Alberta Homeless Project tried to use the old Alberta building to provide services to the homeless in 1990. Their idea was to house people for 90 days or so, then encourage them to find permanent housing. The group also helped renovate the old Merlin Hotel, which is now Spokane Dream Center’s Men’s Discipleship/Life Recovery program. Another downtown church, City Gate, purchased the Alberta Apartments in 2000. It’s now used for both a church headquarters and housing the homeless, a food bank, a meal service and a clothing bank for the hungry and destitute. Tuesday through Friday, the church is a daytime drop-in center with coffee and snacks for those who need a place to go. By Jesse Tinsley THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW The Alberta Apartments were built on railroad right-of-way property in 1910 just a stone’s throw away from the tracks through downtown Spokane. Like most downtown housing, they were built during Spokane’s boom years, which lasted until around 1915. The building at Second Avenue and Madison Street had 30 single and double rooms at modest rates and retail space facing Second. During Spokane’s boom period of 1895 to 1915, tens of thousands of workers had flooded into the city to find jobs and the city had responded by building more than 150 single-room-occupancy hotels for the new residents. Spokane rapidly grew from 36,848 in 1900 to to 104,400 in 1910. The Alberta was only blocks away from the city center, but the area deteriorated quickly as people moved away to the suburbs outside the downtown core. In the post-World War II era, suburban flight left the elderly and hard-luck cases in the hotels designed for the city’s transient populations. As the area became more seedy in the 1970s through 1990s, crime in the neighborhood increased. PHOTOS BY LIBBY KAMROWSKI/ THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW Growing icicles stay rigid Sunday underneath a bridge on Railroad Alley. Icy conditions will continue. THE SNOW WILL GO ON CONTACT THE WRITER: Brrr-ace yourself for up to a foot by week’s end (509) 459-5378 [email protected] By Rebecca White THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW The region could see up to a foot of snow in some areas as colder-than-average temperatures, icy conditions and snowstorms continue throughout the rest of the week. Two to 3 inches of snow was also expected Sunday night, and a storm Monday night could bring an additional 4 to 6 inches, said National Weather Service Meteorologist Joey Clevenger. The region could see a break from snow Wednesday, but if temperatures remain low there could be more snow storms by the end of the week. February temperatures have Pedestrians traverse a snow-swept Monroe Street Bridge going northbound on Sunday. More snow is expected tonight. JESSE TINLEY/ THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW been 10 to 15 degrees below average, Clevenger said, and chillierthan-usual temperatures could continue throughout the rest of the month. “It’s definitely trending to the cooler side of February,” he said. Weather for the next few days is expected to remain colder than normal, but not as cold as last Present day: The Alberta Apartments, at the corner of Second Avenue and Madison Street in downtown Spokane, is the home of City Gate, a downtown church that helps the homeless of downtown Spokane. The church has owned the Alberta, with 30 or so apartments, since 2000. SNOW, 4 See Teens take top honors at Langlauf ski race 2-year-old boy dies after falling into Spokane River with his dogs near his home when the accident occurred, said Mark Gregory, spokesman for the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office. His father and neighbors pulled the child out of By Rebecca White first overall on the 10kilometer course with a time of 31 minutes and 4 seconds. Bridget Burns, 14, was the first woman across the finish line with a time of 37 minutes and 37 se- By Eli Francovich THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW A 2-year-old boy died after falling into the Spokane River west of Nine Mile Falls in north Spokane County on Sunday afternoon. The boy was playing Two teenagers took home top honors at the 39th Spokane Langlauf cross-country ski race today. Patrick Korus, ELI FRANCOVICH/ THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW Travis Prewitt, red jacket, competes Sunday during the 39th Spokane Langlauf cross-country ski race. Prewitt raced in wool clothing and on wooden skis. 17, finished DROWNING, 2 LANGLAUF, 4 See See JIM KERSHNER’S 100 YEARS AGO TODAY A crisis was building for Spokane’s streetcar system. The Washington Water Power Co., the private company that ran many of the city’s streetcar lines, had quit serving a number of routes. With the advent of the automobile, WWP was finding it harder to turn a profit and was abandoning some of the unprofitable routes. The city’s commuters, many of whom depended on those routes, were in a bind. They angrily complained to city commissioners, who took on their cause. Now, the city’s lawyer delivered an ultimatum. The city demanded that WWP resume service the next day on two of the abandoned lines, under threat of lawsuit. The city argued that the streetcar company was falling down in its public duty. Citizens “built homes along these lines on the faith of your promise of service.” WWP had not yet responded to the ultimatum. back on the job in Seattle after the general strike was called off. However, the original impetus for the general strike — the strike of 25,000 shipyard workers — was still not resolved. The shipbuilding industry remained paralyzed. Machine-gunners from Camp Lewis near Tacoma and Fort Wright in Spokane were sent to Butte to keep order during the miners’ strike. The situation there remained tense and the big copper operations were disrupted. One news report said that soldiers were compelled to disperse union picketers with bayonets. From the labor beat: Labor turmoil dominated the news throughout the Northwest. Here’s a rundown: About 30,000 union workers were

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