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Boise could see new riverside park if the “ifs” can be worked out

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 Sue Howell Park plan via City of Boise.
Sue Howell Park plan via City of Boise.

The City of Boise’s Parks & Recreation Department is working to annex a parcel of land in East Boise near Highway 21, which could add another park along the river.

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Nothing is a done deal just yet, according to Parks & Rec chief Doug Holloway.

A potential donor has stepped up and said it would like to give a skinny strip of land near the Boise Greenbelt to the City of Boise.

But the land isn’t actually a part of the city yet – instead hanging out in unincorporated Ada County.

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“The first thing that has to occur that it had be annexed before they could consider taking it,” Holloway said.

Officials have to get the land and some other parcels connected to it officially incorporated to consider the donation request.

And to do an annexation, a neighborhood meeting has to be held – and citizens have to be informed on what exactly the point of the annexation is for.

“We can’t recommend annexation without a purpose,” he said. “You have to have a public meeting.  That’s hows some folks are familiar with this.”

To help illustrate what the park might look like – staffers drew up a concept for the tentatively named Sue Howell Park. It includes concepts like a children’s nature trail, environmental discovery playground, splash pad, open play areas and more.

The request would add about 20 acres to the City of Boise – with roughly eight of those dedicated the possible future park.

If everything goes well, it could make for another riverfront park named for prominent local women (Ann Morrison, Julia Davis, Kathryn Albertson and the like). But there are a slew of ifs still, according to Holloway.

If Planning & Zoning approves the annexation, and if the donor decides to finalize the donation and if Boise City Council accepts it and if money is found to develop it… some day east Boiseans may have a new spot to hang out and stroll.

Stay tuned.

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