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Thousands more homes in the foothills? Utah developer reviving Spring Valley

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A story BoiseDev members got first.

Another planned community with thousands of homes could rise in the foothills north of Eagle after languishing for over a decade.

Developers are again making noise about building thousands of homes on a swath of land east of Highway 16. Once called Spring Valley, the project was part of a now-defunct plan for a sprawling community with 12,000 homes, a hotel, restaurants, a vineyard, and equestrian centers. But now, after the development went dormant during the Great Recession, the land is under new ownership and could resurface again as the Treasure Valley booms.

[Another 1,700 homes approved in Boise foothills along Idaho 55]

A victim of the recession

Utah-based The Clyde Companies and GWC Capital recently purchased Spring Valley and have been meeting with the City of Eagle to discuss the possibility of reviving the project.

“Right now we’ve just purchased property and we’re evaluating development options and we’re collaborating with Eagle,” Julie Warnick, spokesperson for The Clyde Companies said earlier this month.

She did not elaborate on a timeline when more specifics for their plans for the area will be available or when an application could be submitted to Eagle for review.

The original plans for Spring Valley are similar to its growing neighbor, Avimor.

Both planned communities were part of an effort from the Ada County Commissioners to recruit planned community developments in unincorporated areas in the early 2000s. But, the major difference between this project and Avimor is one weathered the recession and the other didn’t.

The Dallas Police and Fire Pension System bought the land for Spring Valley for $42 million in 2005 and hired Arizona-based M3 to develop it into a planned community, according to the Idaho Statesman. The City of Eagle annexed 6,000 acres of Spring Valley in 2007 and the development of 7,000 homes allowed on the property seemed imminent, but then the Wall Street crash hit hard and questions mounted in Texas about the pension system’s investments.

CID starting back up

In 2012, Eagle created a community infrastructure district that would pay for capital improvements to the site. The project briefly came back to life in 2014 when Eagle approved the first subdivision with a water treatment plant, the Idaho Statesman reported, but it never got built.

[Some Boise homeowners pay hefty extra tax while neighbors don’t: How Idaho’s largest CID works]

Eagle spokesperson Ellen Mattila said the CID has been in a dormant state ever since. The developer had a meeting with the CID’s board, which is a separate tax entity as the city but its members are made up of the city council, to discuss reviving the project last month.

The bulk of the discussion at the meeting was about the logistics of the CID and how it works. The developer’s representative did not provide specific details about the timeline or specific plans for Spring Valley.

Margaret Carmel - BoiseDev senior reporter
Margaret Carmel is a BoiseDev reporter focused on the City of Boise, housing, homelessness and growth. Contact her at [email protected] or by phone at (757)705-8066.

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