Three hotel builders plan construction in downtown Boise by year’s end

Teya Vitu//August 10, 2015

Three hotel builders plan construction in downtown Boise by year’s end

Teya Vitu//August 10, 2015

Dunkley Music last week moved out of its home for the past 50 years to make way for a Residence Inn hotel. Photo by Teya Vitu.
Dunkley Music moved out of its home August 7 to make way for a Residence Inn hotel. Dunkley’s is moving to a new store on Eagle Road. Photo by Teya Vitu.

Three new hotels could be under construction in downtown Boise by the end of the year.

So far, the proposed Residence Inn by Marriott destined for the Dunkley Music property in downtown Boise is the farthest along among four proposed hotel projects. On August 7, there were moving trucks outside Dunkley as the owners of the business prepared to empty the building.

Jared S. Smith, who is developing the Residence Inn, filed for a footings and foundations permit July 31 with Boise Planning and Development Services. The permit could be issued in four to six weeks, said Sarah Schafer, the city’s design review manager.

Filing for a footings and foundations permit is the first in the city’s three-step building permit process. Smith will also have to get a shell and core permit, and interiors permits. Some developers file for all three at the same time and some do it individually. Doing it individually can enable the the footings and foundations permit to be issued more quickly, Schafer said.

Smith closed Aug. 7 on the acquisition of the Dunkley and neighboring Winther properties, where he plans to build a 10-story, 186-room Residence Inn by Marriott on Capitol Boulevard between Broad and Myrtle Streets. He didn’t disclose what he paid for the parcels.

“We’re still hoping for this fall (to start construction),” said Smith, principal at Pennbridge Lodging, an Eagle-based hotel development and operating firm. “That’s the goal.”

Smith said asbestos remediation work will need to come first with the Dunkley’s building, which he hopes to demolish in about four weeks. Demolition permits are issued on a “walk-in” basis, Schafer said.

Inn at 500 Capitol would be the third hotel at the intersection of Myrtle and Capitol. Image courtesy of CSHQA.
Inn at 500 Capitol could start construction as soon as late September. Image courtesy of CSHQA.

Three other hotels are in the works for downtown Boise. The Inn at 500 Capitol and Hyatt Place have gone through the city design review process but the owners haven’t submitted building permit applications.

The Inn at 500 team expects to apply for its footings and foundation permit in the next two weeks, said Brian Obie, president  of Eugene, Ore.,-based Obie Development Partners, which is proposing the Inn at 500 Capitol at Capitol and Myrtle, across from Smith’s Residence Inn.

“It sounds like we’ll be in lock-step with the folks across the street,” Obie said. “We expect to break ground the last week of September or early October. We hope to have the podium – the first floor – built before snow falls.”

Obie has brought the height of Inn at 500 Capitol down from seven floors to six floors but has slightly increased the room count from 107 to 113. The luxury hotel will have balconies for every room and a 4,000-square-foot banquet facility for 100 people with a 3,000-square-foot outdoor veranda, Obie said.

The hotel is part of a partnership with Hawkins Companies, which owns the property where Inn at 500 will be built.

Provo, Utah,-based PEG Development is in the design phase for its five-story, 150-room Hyatt Place, which is proposed for the Boise Plaza parking lot downtown that is bounded by Bannock, 10th, 11th and Jefferson streets. The hotel also will have about 3,000 square feet of meeting space, said Robert Schmidt, vice president at PEG. Construction is expected to take 12 to 14 months.

“We anticipate breaking ground this year still,” said Schmidt, who expects to apply for a building permit in November.

The construction of the Hyatt Place is a partnership with Boise-based Rafanelli & Nahas, which owns the Boise Plaza and parking lot and intends to be majority owner of the hotel.

A Hyatt Place may or may not be a new hotel built at 10th and Bannock. Image from the Boise Planning & Development Services website.
Hyatt Place construction could start by year’s end. Image from the Boise Planning & Development Services website.

Gardner Co. has not submitted any applications yet at Planning and Development Services for its hotel proposal on Parcel B, the 5.02-acre dirt parking lot bounded by Front and Myrtle streets and 11th and 13th streets.

The Gardner Company is not revealing any new details before presenting its updates to the Greater Boise Auditorium District Board of Directors on Aug. 20.

“All will be revealed in time,” Gardner Executive Vice President David Wali said.

Wali did acknowledge that Gardner now plans to build two hotels on Parcel B, the 5.02-acre dirt parking lot that GBAD owns between the parcels. Gardner is negotiating with Embassy Suites by Hilton for an 11-story, 200-room hotel at Front and 11th.

Gardner initially had proposed an apartment building for Myrtle and 11th but now wants to build a second hotel at Myrtle and 11th. Wali said the additional hotel would help meet the desires of GBAD Executive Director Pat Rice, who has said the Boise Centre, which he also directs, needs a full-service hotel with 400 or so rooms.

Wali said he’s not concerned if Gardner is first to start construction or not.  Gardner would have no demolition work to do as Parcel B is an empty dirt lot.

“We want to make sure we have the right product,” Wali said.