The City of Boise could soon add another piece of the foothills to its landholdings.
On Tuesday, Mayor Lauren McLean and other city officials stood in a dusty parking lot at the end of Pierce Park Lane in Northwest Boise to announce the city negotiated the potential purchase of 29 acres for open space and wildlife preservation. Over the past two years, parks and recreation officials have been in negotiation with the Pursley family to purchase the property for $605,000.
Boise City Council will take a vote on purchasing the property at its August 31 council meeting.
“This is so important to Northwest Boise, but also to Boise as a whole as we think about how overtime connecting residents from trail to trail and neighborhood to neighborhood,” McLean said, as a deer and her fawn roamed in the nearby shrubs. “I am really excited that next week council is considering this purchase and we’re able to talk about it today and I am truly grateful for the family and all who made this possible.”
Clegg hoping for open space city-wide
This land will be purchased out of the city’s $10 million in Open Space and Clean Water levy funds, which were approved by voters in 2015 and again in 2017 due to a clerical error. If the purchase goes through, the City of Boise does not plan to build a trailhead or new trails in the area right away. Existing informal and landowner allowed access in the area will remain as is.
City Council President Elaine Clegg also praised the purchase and the voters for approving funds to preserve open space. She said the city has been looking to buy more land in the northwestern part of the city to expand access, but she also hopes the city will start purchasing more land outside of the foothills for residents across the region to enjoy. She gave the example of the Hyatt Hidden Lakes Reserve on Maple Grove Road, which used to be a gravel pit.
“…We need to keep in mind that these opportunities come because the citizens stepped up to provide the money and also property owners step up and say ‘hey we have a nice property that we think would be great access and we’re willing to work with you to see if you’re willing to purchase it as part of that open space’,” Clegg said. “We owe so much to those property owners who are willing to do that and the citizens who fund it.”