BOISEDEV MEMBER PREVIEW STORY
What will it take to build a stadium in Boise’s West End. Aside from funding, a possible Boise State partnership, a possible soccer team and potential voter approval – it will need something even more basic.
BoiseDev first reported in March on the purchase of the Symposion Lounge by an entity related to Boise Sports Park developer Greenstone Properties.
It’s the third site attempt for the group, after prior ideas near Boise State and along the Boise River failed to come together.
But a large multi-use sports facility obviously won’t fit on the bar site, and instead would need a number of area parcels to come together under common ownership.
In recent months, BoiseDev reached out to or talked with nearly every adjacent landowner. Our reporting shows Greenstone principal Chris Schoen is working on a number of deals to make the project a reality.
The main event: a complicated set of parcels
The stadium is likely to be placed on a set of parcels formerly occupied by Roundtree Chevrolet – and before that Larry Barnes Chevrolet.
The site is a total of 6.55 acres – about 1.5 acres smaller than the previously proposed stadium site on Shoreline Drive.
The land is divided up into ten different parcels – with nine of them owned by Los Angeles-based LocalConstruct (shown in green). At one point, the City of Boise acquired the site for a new headquarters for Boise Police Department. Those plans were later scrapped and BPD moved to west Boise.
The City of Boise traded the land to LocalConstruct in exchange for the land under the Spaulding Ranch site in west Boise. The trade went through in 2016 – but had a number of conditions. One of them related to a road built down the middle of the property. That complicates the parcel – which leaves a long, skinny strip owned by the City of Boise (shown in blue). The developer had to agree to the road and the stipulation to build ten affordable housing units in the development as part of the trade, since the downtown site had a higher value than Spaulding Ranch, and trades with public entities have to be equal in value under Idaho law.
LocalConstruct is beyond the deadline to make improvements set forth in the original agreement, but Boise City Council extended the deadline last fall. LocalConstruct told the Idaho Statesman and later confirmed to BoiseDev that the land could be part of a stadium deal.
The City of Boise, Greenstone and LocalConstruct will have to put together a lawful agreement that stitches the properties back together and somehow avoids a public bid process for the property owned by taxpayers.
The College of Western Idaho owns a large site – formerly another car dealer: Bob Rice Ford. At one point, Boise Mayor Dave Bieter proposed a land swap that would move the stadium to CWI’s property and the give the college facilities on Shoreline Drive. The idea never materialized, and CWI officials maintain they plan to hold on to the old Bob Rice site for a future campus.
Next door neighbors
There are two more properties on the block bound by Main St., Fairview Ave., Whitewater Park Blvd. and 27th St. But instead of an abandoned parking lot, each is home to active businesses.
A rendering of a possible ballpark site plan posted by Boise communications firm Strategies 360 on Facebook appeared to show the ballpark and related development spilling onto each of these parcels.
Integra Paperless Business Solutions operates out of a 18,513 square foot building at the corner of Main and 27th. The .77 acre parcel is controlled by Integra owner Roger Brazier. He wouldn’t comment on the record on the status of his property.
To the south, at 27th and Fairview, sits a US Bank branch. The branch is set to close in June, but officials with the bank said the closure – and several others – is not related to the possible stadium development. The 1.11 acres of land under this building is owned by Maryann Fivecoat of Boise. Fivecoat did not respond to our attempts to reach her.
Former EPA brownfield to the south
South of the possible ballpark site, across Fairview Ave., lies a set of parcels chopped up when the Interstate 184 connector sprouted up in the early 1990s.
The former Goodman Oil property along Fairview Ave. (pink on the map above), is split into three pieces – each of which are owned by Boise businessman Dan Yanke. Yanke could not be reached for comment.
The properties were the subject of more than $730,000 in EPA fines, according to a 2013 story from Boise State’s Blue Review:
In an obtuse triangle at the far western corner of downtown Boise, hemmed in by freeway and river and surrounded by cyclone fencing, sits a former petroleum storage yard. From the 1920s through about 2009, it was the Northwest base of operations for Goodman Oil Company, which owned gas stations in Idaho, Oregon and Washington. In 2000, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found 35 chronic underground storage tank violations on Goodman’s properties and issued more than $736,000 in fines against the company — the largest tank fine ever issued in the region.
Other various sites
LGD Ventures owns a portion of land along 27th St. at Fairview. It’s the site of a former Midas Car Care Center. LGD is owned by Lesley Andrus of Hailey, Garret A. Goldberg of San Francisco and Darren A. Goldberg of San Diego. The trio were unavailable for comment. The building is currently leased to Wandervans van rentals. LGD acquired a sliver of property from the Ada County Highway District under a vacation request in 2017.
On Whitewater Park Blvd., Idaho Power owns a 10,520 commercial shop building. The building formerly operated as an automotive shop built in 1969. The utility would not comment on any negotiations with Greenstone. The rendering above shows new construction on this site.
Trinity, LLC owns a piece of land housing the Whitewater Oral Surgery Group at 3003 W. Main St.. The two-story modern building went up in 2014 on the site of a former used car dealership.
Timber and Love, LLC owns the former Koppel’s Browzeville. It completed work on an extensive revamp and remodel of the former outdoor goods store in 2017. The building houses its headquarters building – which is often featured on the HGTV show Boise Boys.