Westside Downtown Boise is an evolving neighborhood that lacks adequate public space amenities for the growing population of residents and businesses. The public voiced a need for parks and public spaces in Westside Downtown during public workshops in 2016. The resulting master plan, City of Boise’s Downtown Parks and Public Spaces Master Plan, embodied this input by recommending the creation of a distinctive urban open space near the intersection of 11th Street and Bannock Street. A public-private partnership in 2019 between CCDC, The City of Boise, and Eleven Eleven West Jefferson, LLC, has made possible the ability to create that distinctive space for Boise residents and workers to enjoy.
The Westside Downtown Urban Park will provide a place for people to connect with the outdoors on a daily basis, serve as a hub for community events, and enhance the urban lifestyle of downtown employees, residents, shoppers and visitors.
The park site is surrounded by surface parking lots that detract from downtown’s vibrancy, walkability and economic vitality. Making this public investment will catalyze private investment in housing, dining, office, and neighborhood services next to and near the public park.
Situated along a bicycle corridor to and from downtown, the park will provide amenities that enhance the downtown pedestrian and cycling experience with streetscape improvements and key features including:
- A large, tree-lined green space
- Public Art
- Shaded seating
- New streetscapes along all three street frontages
- Pedestrian alley with limited auto access
- Public restrooms
- Places to store bikes
The project development budget is $4,305,000. This includes all planning, design, soft costs, and construction costs associated with building the park, parking lot and surrounding streetscapes.
Input from the community regarding park design, amenities and features began in June 2018 with a public open house held across the street from the park site and coordinated by Boise Parks and Recreation. Additionally, a public survey was conducted to receive feedback from interested people unable to attend the open house. Results from the open house and survey show the following priorities from Boise residents:
- A majority participants wanted to see an interactive public art feature that connects to the park’s role as an oasis amid an active, urban environment.
- A desire for a sustainable, low cost, low maintenance water feature, such as a fog feature element was desired by participants.
- Trees and shade, native plants and flexible event space were also top priorities.
- Food and dining was a theme often mentioned by participants.
In January 2020, Boise Arts and History’s selected artist, Matthew Mazzotta, hosted an “outdoor living room” session to gather public input and learn more about the space and the vision residents have for it. Mazzotta used this feedback to develop two art design concepts that were presented to the community for feedback. A public feedback survey form was released by Boise Arts and History during the week of July 20th and closed on July 31st. Nearly 200 comments were collected, with a majority of comments in favor of the “Gentle Breeze” design option. The design concept and public feedback were presented to and approved by the community-based selection panel, the CCDC Board, the Arts & History Commission, and Boise City Council. Mazzotta’s work will be completed in tandem with the construction of the Westside Urban Park.
The City of Boise and CCDC are working through the process to officially name the park. We will release more information about next steps in 2021.
For project specific questions or concerns, please contact CCDC Project Manager Amy Fimbel.