RUNDOWN AND ABANDONED FOR NEARLY A DECADE, DOWNTOWN SPOKANE’S RIDPATH HOTEL IS ON ITS WAY TO A NEW BEGINING IN A FIVE-TO-ONE VOTE LAST NIGHT– SPOKANE’S CITY COUNCIL APPROVED AN ALMOST TWO MILLION DOLLAR LINE OF CREDIT TO HELP REVAMP THE RIDPATH. TURNING THE HISTORIC HOTEL INTO AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN SPOKANE. A NEED THAT SUPPORTERS SAY IS CRITICAL. Councilwoman Karen Stratton, City of Spokane : We hear it every day the lack of affordable housing we have in this community. We have an opportunity here to stand up and get a solution going. THE MONEY COMES FROM A NOW-DISCONTINUED FEDERAL PROGRAM AND HAS TO BE USED FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECTS. THE COUNCIL ALSO GRANTED THE PROJECT A TAX EXEMPTION . DEVELOPER RON WELLS’ PLAN INCLUDES MORE THAN 200 APARTMENTS AND 8 CONDOS IN THE FORMER HOTEL. 179 OF THOSE UNITS ARE TARGETED TOWARD YOUNG PROFESSIONALS MAKING UNDER 30-THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR. RENT WOULD RANGE FROM JUST OVER FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR A MICRO APARTMENT,TO 13-HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR A 2-BEDROOM LOFT. Jonathan Mallahan, Director of Neighborhood and Community Services : The Ridpath was the right place because of the historic nature, because of the number of units that we can create for a relatively low investment and the fact that it’s supported by great transportation and surrounding amenities. THE NEXT STEP IS TO GET APPROVAL FROM THE WASHINGTON STATE HOUSING FINANCE COMMISSION. WHICH HELPS PAY FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING CONSTRUCTION. IF ALL GOES WELL, WELLS WILL CLOSE ON THE RIDPATH MAY FOURTH. CONSTRUCTION SHOULD START SHORTLY AFTER THAT. IT SHOULD TAKE ABOUT 12 MONTHS, BUT UNITS WILL BE LEASED FLOOR BY FLOOR, SO SOME WILL BE MOVE-IN READY IN LESS THAN A YEAR.