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A home burned in 2016 foothills fire. Now 17 new homes could be built on the same site

A project to build 17 homes on the very lowest part of the Boise Foothills came back to life recently.

Marquis Development Group won approval from Boise’s Planning & Zoning Commission to reissue a preliminary plat for the development along Barber Valley Dr. near Warm Springs Ave. It also must go in front of the Boise City Council.

The site burned during the 2016 Boise Foothills fire set by an arsonist on Table Rock. The fire burned more than 2,500 acres and destroyed one home – which sits on the site proposed for the new development.

The Hermosa Hills project initially won approval in 2018, but the two-year agreement expired last summer.

[Proposed project would add homes to Boise foothills next to popular trail]

Home possible in place of one that burned

Hermosa Hills Boise
The Hermosa Hills subdivision in Boise would go on a site burned by the 2016 Boise Foothills fire, seen here in June of 2016. Photo: Don Day/BoiseDev file
Hermosa Hills Boise
The site as it looked earlier this month. Photo: Don Day/BoiseDev

The 17.3-acre site would include a new access street as well as 17 homes. Most of the homesites would sit on large lots along Barber Drive, with a few lots placed higher up the hillside. A future access road would provide access to a homesite in roughly the same area as the home that was destroyed during the 2016 fire, according to the plat document.

The developer submitted a 15-page wild-urban interface fire safety plan, which includes agreements on site access, setbacks, defensible space, landscaping, water supply and construction materials. Boise Fire signed off on the plan.

The site also went through a geotechnical and rockfall analysis.

[New condos going up in Boise’s Barber Valley, set to hit market soon]

The city required the developer provide an easement for a future trailhead and trail access, an amenity long sought by residents in the neighboring Harris Ranch subdivision. The area has no direct access to the Ridge to Rivers trail system, and instead must access the foothills more than a mile away at the Homestead Trail trailhead.

The city also required further approvals for the home to be built on the site of the house destroyed by fire in 2016, relating to further site and fire analysis.

The Boise City Council is expected to review the project at its meeting on May 11th. Because of software deficiencies with the City of Boise’s permit software provided by Acella Government Systems, we can’t link you directly to any of the documents we referenced here. However, you can click here, click the documents tab, click page 8 and then select “PDS-Correspondence – NOTIFICATION LETTER FOR THE MAY 11, 2021 CC HEARING” to find the meeting notice.

Don Day - BoiseDev editor
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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