The West Bench is getting a new paved pathway connecting two parks and hundreds of homes.
During her State of the City address last week, Boise Mayor Lauren McLean announced the city’s first project in its ongoing effort to build out a network of pathways along canals around the city. The first effort will be a half-mile connection between Milwaukee Street and Cole Road behind Capital High School.
The project, which doesn’t have a final price tag yet, will run through Milwaukee Park and the new Spaulding Ranch agriculture-focused park currently under construction. The city took input on what pathways around the city it should focus on first earlier this year. McLean’s Transportation Advisory Bre Brush said the city opted to build this pathway first because of the 3,400 residents within half a mile of the pathway and the services in the area.
“This project rose to the top as a potential starting point because it hit on a lot of the priorities residents shared with us throughout the planning process- connectivity to parks, schools and transit,” Brush said. “Not only would this project connect two parks together- Milwaukee Park and Spaulding Ranch, there are three schools and six bus stops within a mile.”
Brush said the city will begin designing and pricing the project “immediately” and plans to have designs ready for the community to weigh in on starting this spring.
This pathway is south of the planned “linear park” near Settler’s Canal on Goddard Road. The park, planned in partnership with the University of Idaho, could include a walking path, native plans, interpretative signs, a bus shelter, a pollinator garden and other small gathering plazas.