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Bown breakfast restaurant finally snags approval, over objections from neighbors

Regence

It’s been a long and winding road in Bown Crossing.

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We first told you about a proposal for a new breakfast restaurant and added retail in Bown Crossing in 2018. The Yick Yee Family partnership hoped to build a new building at the corner of Bown Way and ParkCenter Blvd.

But neighbors in Bown Crossing – including residential condo owners, Saint Alphonsus, and other retail tenants had concerns. Mostly — about parking.

In May of 2019, the Boise City Council decided not to approve the project, anchored by the 80-seat restaurant. Boise’s code required 38 parking spaces for the project as designed – but the developer only proposed 14 spots.

Without the parking reduction, the development could not move forward. So Yick Yee changed its approach. They asked to rezone the parcel to Boise’s pedestrian commercial zoning type. They also said they would limit the restaurant to 40 seats, instead of 80. They also slightly adjusted the building, shaving off about 300 square feet.

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The project still needed the city to approve a parking reduction – but only by five spaces instead of more than 20. The Boise Planning & Zoning Commission earlier signed off on the new plan, but neighbors appealed.

Concerns about parking continued to pop up in testimony – with neighbors worried that the restaurant’s customers would far outstrip the 14 spaces on the parcel – and instead use spaces throughout the development. The rest of the users in Bown Crossing have a shared access parking agreement – meaning customers can park in any space, no matter which business (or home) they visit. The Yick Yee parcel is not part of the agreement.

In the end, Boise’s City Council decided the new approach and changes suffice. The council voted unanimously to deny the appeal, which would let the project move forward.

Don Day
Don is the founder and editor of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow.

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