Zeppole to move, expand bakery; cafes to remain open


Boise mainstay Zeppole Baking Co. will move production from its location in the Southshore shopping center this summer.

The move to a production facility in the area behind Fred Meyer on Federal Say will let the owners meet increasing demand. 

Zeppole owners Charles & Alison Alpiers. Courtesy photo.

Zeppole owners Charles & Alison Alpiers. Courtesy photo.

“This move will allow us to continue to produce the highest-quality hand-crafted bread at an even greater scale than before and expand our distribution to new areas of Idaho, as well as to parts of Oregon and Montana,” owner Charles Alpers said in a prepared statement. 

The bakery will expand from its current 1,800 square foot space to the 6,900 square foot production facility - but the current cafe on ParkCenter will remain open, as well as a location on 8th Street downtown.

A new product is immediately promised with the switch up. 

“We have an incredible recipe for a unique cinnamon bun that we’re excited to get into production. With the expanded space, we’ll be able to do some cakes and even grab-and-go products at our two cafés,” Alpers said.

The move is financed by the Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation - a nonprofit lender that helps businesses that may not qualify for traditional lending. 

4 Wheel Parts rolls into Boise


For 44 years, Four Wheel Parts brought four-wheeling to the fore. 

Now the chain is off-roading its way into Boise with a store on Franklin Rd. next to Plato's Closet. It will open the old Boise Fitness Equipment location (which relocated nearby).  

The retailer sells accessories for Jeeps and other four-wheel and off-road vehicles.  

Grand opening set for June 3rd. 

Up on the rooftop: New Library gets solar panels

Photo courtesy City of Boise by Otto Kitsinger

Photo courtesy City of Boise by Otto Kitsinger

The new Library! at Bown Crossing in Boise opened this month -- and above the books and computers and other typical library fare will be an extra feature: solar panels.

Library communications manager Kevin Winslow says the project is a test, for now.

"We’re currently running a test/pilot with a couple panels to measure how much energy production we get," Winslow said. "After running the building for a year, we’ll know how much energy it consumes and have a good estimate as to how much solar production we can get per panel."

The building permit says the installation is a 2-kilowatt facility, installed by local company Bluebird Solar and Light.

If the pilot works out more solar panels may be added - with the goal of having the library having a net-zero energy rating, meaning it doesn't draw any energy from the greater power grid.

(Here's an archive of a story I did years ago at KTVB - I Wonder: why does the Library have the "!" on it?


Constructivist: Idaho St. Townhomes meets challenges

In a location next to a grocery store-turned-TV station and behind a motel, Hale Development saw opportunity with the Idaho St. Condos.

New local blog The Constructivist talked with the architect behind the project - Stan Cole of Cole Architects.

This project, like all projects, has its challenges. Because of the location and type of residential product, there were no comparative projects. Finding an appraiser and a lender that understood this type of project was tough. But, we overcame and are well on the way.

Cole also said the project will be a little more full-featured in phase two, as the first phase was dialed back a bit to meet market demands.

All About Games to add Boise mall location

All About Games, which has locations in 8th St. in Downtown Boise and on Overland Rd. in Overland Park plans a spot in the Boise Towne Square Mall, according to building permit filings.

The store will go into a 3,077 square foot space next to JCPenney that used to be occupied by EyeMasters.



Statesman: Trio hopes to lure IKEA, In N Out


The question I get asked most often is "when are we getting an In N Out? And it's usually followed up by "what about IKEA?" 

Neither of those are imminent, but the Statesman's Audrey Dutton brings to light a little news amidst a must-read story about LeAnn Hume, Andrea Nilson & Sara Sara Shropshire of Cushman-Wakefield. 

  •  Q: Is anyone new coming in? When are we getting an IKEA?
  • Nilson: I’ve called IKEA a million times — and, yes, I have a perfect location in mind for them right now.
  • Hume: They say they need one million people in the MSA. And we’re about 680,000 now?
  • Nilson: I like to use the stats that The Village at Meridian uses. They use a draw of one million people. ... We’re working on ’em.
  • Hume: In-N-Out, we always get that question: “When is In-N-Out coming?” And that’s a distribution issue. A lot of [barriers to] entry are distribution-driven, or they have to solve that before they get in here. 


Read the full profile here. Great stuff.  

How will a Boise Stadium be paid for?

Field of money dreams. BoiseDev.com photo illustration

Field of money dreams. BoiseDev.com photo illustration

The machinery of various agencies in the City of Trees is working to help make a stadium a reality. But one detail has largely been papered over: How will it be paid for?

During Thursay's State of Downtown Boise event, a short panel discussion was held on the stadium idea - and BoiseDev.com has obtained new documents that help illustrate the possible path forward.

Top line: Greenstone Properties buys the land from St. Luke's. Greenstone donates the land for the stadium. CCDC/GBAD/City of Boise pay for the stadium, and some public agency owns it. Greenstone builds offices/hotels/retail around it. Tax values go up and it pays for the stadium.  That's the idea, at least.

The details:

  • It pays for itself: Boise Mayor Dave Bieter turns a phrase to say the stadium funds... itself: "The stadium is the catalyst for the development that helps pay for the stadium. That really is the magic that makes it happen."  
  • Say what now? The mayor claims that public funds would be used - "We anticipate some city capital and some auditorium district capital in the mix."  In addition, the Capital City Development Corporation is working to create a new urban renewal district in the area around the stadium.  The hope is that the stadium will anchor a development and attract additional investment in the area - raising property values and bringing more tax dollars in.
  • CCDC in the mix: CCDC would create a fifth urban renewal district downtown around the stadium. A February 1st draft term sheet obtained by BoiseDev shows for the first time how this thing could get paid for: "CCDC will support the project and will participate financially– including the ability to provide taxable or tax-exempt bonds to assist in the financing. The Bonds will be based on the projected increment generated by the project."
    • Shorter: CCDC creates a district and collects the increased taxes that could come from increased property taxes around the stadium.  In anticpation, they take out a bond so the cash can be put up right away.
  • Who owns this deal? A public agency. But which one? Unclear.  CCDC says the stadium has to be owned by some public agency -- but the draft term sheet says it would "not be responsible for any operations, management or programming." CCDC says the developer would have to donate the land under the stadium for the project.
  • Is GBAD good for this? That seems to be the idea.  Bieter mentioned that agency Thursday - and the CCDC doc mentions that the auditorium district could contribute $5 million of its funds to the stadium.  In a Tuesday election, Bieter helped replace a foe with a friend on the GBAD board.
  • Timeline: The CCDC district could get finalized this year. GBAD would also have to figure out how to fund the piece it is expected to contribute. Chris Schoen with Greenstone Properties, which is the developer on the project, said he wants to move fast. "The goal is to be able to break ground 12-18 months from today. It would take another 16 months to build. We could be ready for soccer in the 2020 season. 


St. Luke's to move historic home, construction office

Courtesy St. Luke's Health System

Courtesy St. Luke's Health System

  • Move a-Foote: St. Luke's Health System is shuffling things around in advance of its big expansion.  The Bishop Foote Guest House will move from its current spot at 2nd and Jefferson to an area over by the Pioneer Cemetery on Ave B.  A separate construction office will also move to the Ave. B site, if the City of Boise signs off.
  • Use and history: The Bishop Foote house was built in 1935. In 1972 it became an outpatient home for adults and has been owned and operated by the hospital for the last 40 years. More than 100,000 people have stayed in the two-story home. 
  • Hey neighbors: St. Luke's will hold a required neighborhood meeting on both buildings at 6 p.m. on May 25th in the Anderson Conference Center.
  • Not-AKA: The Bishop Foote Guest House is not to be confused with The Bishop's House - a home formerly owned by St. Luke's that was built in the late 1890's, and was home to former Episcopal Bishop Foote. That home is now located out by the Old Pen.
  • More to come? Probably. The plans for the downtown hospital show lots of places where homes are now to be used for new facilities. SLHS already owns most if not all of the land.  A consultant for the hospital system said in 2014 of most of the homes: "that the historic context associated with the study area is not considered significant to the history of Boise."  The Bishop Foote house was listed as an exception to the rule.

Downtown Boise gets its own blue turf


Courtesy Athlos Academies

The Athlos Academies HQ in the former Bon Marché (aka Macy's aka CC Anderson) building on Idaho St. is just about done. The defining feature may be a football field and basketball court indoors.  

Athlos will train teachers of its academies around the country in the Boise facility -- and will incorporate the indoor sports facilities. 

Instead of green, the Athlos folks (naturally) chose blue.  

 “We now have turf and a hardwood basketball court. The turf is blue—a reflection of our pride for being located in Boise, Idaho, home of the iconic Boise State blue turf." Cameron Arial, chief development officer at Athlos Academies said. 

Athlos employees started moving in late last month.  



Former Albertsons CEO's luxury pad is for sale... still

LysiBishop.com screenshot

LysiBishop.com screenshot

Larry Johnston came to Boise in 2001 as an exalted General Electric leader. He was supposed to give Boise-based grocer Albertsons a Six Sigma sheen and turbocharge growth.

Instead, he drove down the stock, ruffled feathers and drove the chain to a sell-off that split it in three parts in 2006.  His five years weren't great for his impact on Boise's economy (except maybe the 20 grand Albertsons paid BPD officers to guard the Albertsons corporate HQ.... really)

He left town after the selloff but still owns a giant 5,000-foot plus condo on the 16th floor of the Grove Hotel.  Zach Kyle at the Idaho Statesman showcased the condo listing - and BoiseDev has confirmed it's the condo still owned by Johnston's family trust.

$1.98 million gets you a big condo with sweeping views of Boise, a raft of bedrooms and private patios. Plus, you can put some cash in ol' Larry's pocket.


Free wi-fi coming to Boise's Grove Plaza

Boise's Grove Plaza framed by sunny skies Thursday morning. A permanent cloud - of the wi-fi variety - will soon be over the plaza.  

Boise's Grove Plaza framed by sunny skies Thursday morning. A permanent cloud - of the wi-fi variety - will soon be over the plaza.  

Another in a slew of changes and updates to Boise's Grove Plaza will make users of wireless devices happy: free wireless internet.

The Capital City Development Corporation, which for now owns the plaza, is installing a wireless cloud system that will allow up to 1,500 devices to connect at once - and is fed by a 1-gigabyte data service.

CCDC contracted with Stability Networks, a Boise IT firm to install the service which will be up and running in time for the plaza's grand re-opening on June 7th.

"Working lunches on the plaza are now even more productive with plenty of shade, seating and connectivity," CCDC officials said in a statement provided to BoiseDev. "Downtown students and workers can enjoy the Boise summer days while staying productive and co nnected to classes and projects."

The system could be expanded in the future to include more of the 8th Street cooridor, according to CCDC.  The urban renewal agency is expected to terminate or "sunset" its central district over the next year, and has announced it will turn over ownership of The Grove and 8th Street to the City of Boise.

 RELATED:  Dancing pixel display planned for Grove Plaza approach 

St. Luke's plans new Meridian clinic

St. Luke's Health System has submitted documents to the City of Meridian to build a new clinic at Amity Rd. and Hillsdale Ave.

The plan is for a 16,288 square foot building with more than 20 exams rooms, plus x-ray, rehab gym and procedure rooms.

Plans also show future expansion of a skilled nursing facility adjacent to the site.


Candidates backed by Boise's mayor take GBAD seats

Courtesy Ada County elections  

Courtesy Ada County elections  

The Greater Boise Auditorium District will have a new director after an election victory by political novice Kristin Muchow.  

Muchow and current director Hy Kloc were the top two vote getters in the GBAD election Tuesday, in a pool system where the top two take seats.   

Muchow, a manager at local firm Meeting Systems Inc., beats out GBAD incumbent Judy Peavey-Derr for one of the two seats. Muchow received an endorsement and large campaign contribution from Boise Mayor Dave Bieter. Bieter previously ran against, and beat, Peavey-Derr in his reelection bid for mayor in 2015. 

Muchow received campaign contributions from Bieter's campaign account for $1,000, city councilor Scot Ludwig and his wife for a combined $1,500, as well as smaller contributions from city councilor Ben Quintana and mayor's office staffer Diana Lachiondo. Muchow raised more than $18,000 for the race. 

Kloc was also backed by a $1,000 contribution from Bieter's campaign war chest, as well as $250 from city councilor and state senator Maryann Jordan's campaign fund and $250 from city councilor Lauren McClean. He also had the backing of CCDC commissioners John Hale and Dana Zuckerman. Kloc raised about $10,000. 

Peavey-Derr listed just two donations totaling $300. 

A fourth candidate, Scott Mecham, raised just $100.  

Turnout for the election was 5.4%.  

State of Idaho wants new Nampa liquor store spots

The Idaho State Liquor Division is looking for proposals for locations for two liquor stores in the Nampa area.

It hopes to put the locations in 3,900-6,000 square feet of space in two of three locations.  The RFP contract notes the locations must be 300 feet or more away from a school and zoned for this type of store.

  • Within 1½ mile radius of the intersection of 12th Avenue Road & West Iowa Avenue;
  • Within 1½ mile radius of the intersection of Flamingo & Garrity; or,
  • Within 1½ mile radius of the intersection ofI-84 & Highway 55.


BoiseDev wins first place award for business reporting


The Idaho Press Club recognized BoiseDev.com with a top honor for business reporting at its annual event earlier this month.  

The site won a first place plaque in the Business Reporting - Daily Print category for "T” for transit: Decision made on Boise streetcar; inside the push to make it a reality, an exhaustive 3,000-word look at the City of Boise's quiet push to build political support for a streetcar in Downtown Boise. BoiseDev is the only online-only publication to win an award in the daily print craft categories.

In addition, the site took third place honors in the Website General Excellence - Online category, behind established players KTVB and Boise State Public Radio.

BoiseDev launched in September of 2016, covering business and development news in SW Idaho.   The Idaho Press Club is an organization dedicated to improving journalism in the State of Idaho. 

Remodel, close and move: Three stores shuffle at Boise Towne Square

Several changes at Boise Towne Square to note:

  • Jake's Dry Dock II has moved from its spot near Dillard's to a new space upstairs next to clothier Fuego. The clothing store features "Life is Good" products like shirts and hats.
  • Nakedology Cosmetics near Macy's has closed. It retains a location in the Village at Meridian.
  • Teen goods retailer Zumiez is in temporary space while a remodel of its main location is underway.

New BoxLunch store coming to Boise Towne Square

Work at Bogus well under way

Following BoiseDev's scoop on the big changes on the horizon at the Bogus Basin ski resort - work is already well under way.

Matt Roderick with Rapid Aerial, LLC sent along this image of the JR Simplot Lodge and base area taken last week.

Dirt has already been moved in the base area to support future changes, and the lower terrace around the lodge has already been removed and crews have begun work in that area.

Bogus hopes to begin opening new summer amenities this year.