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First Interstate Bank will move to Pioneer Crossing

First Interstate Bank will leave Plaza 121 at Ninth and Idaho streets. Photo by Teya Vitu.

The Idaho regional headquarters for First Interstate Bank will move into the Pioneer Crossing office building that just started construction at Myrtle and 13th streets in downtown Boise.

First Interstate is the first tenant announced for the five-story, 120,000-square-foot office building scheduled to open in summer 2019. First Interstate will occupy about 15,000 square feet on the second floor along with a ground floor bank branch, regional President Rob Perez said.

Pioneer Crossing developer Gardner Company/Ball Ventures anticipates announcing a second tenant for the office building sometime in July, said David Wali, Gardner’s executive vice president.

Also in July, Pioneer Crossing’s other major tenants are expected to open with the 150-room Hilton Garden Inn at Front and 13th streets and Panera Bread at Myrtle and 11th streets.

An 850-space garage has been open to the public since early April at Front and 11th streets. The garage also has the offices of the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce, Boise Valley Economic Partnership and Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Rob Perez

First Interstate Bank has outgrown its 8,500 square feet in the Plaza 121 tower at Ninth and Idaho streets that the bank, Bank of Cascades and Farmers & Merchants Bank have occupied since 2006. Bank of Cascades later acquired F&M and in May 2017 First Interstate acquired Bank of the Cascades.

The Billings, Montana, bank has about 120 branches in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington, and Wyoming. The Idaho region overseen from Boise has 14 branches from Mountain Home to Fruitland with a total of 140 employees.

“I anticipate continued acquisitions (of other banks),” Perez said. “I anticipate additional organic growth.”

First Interstate has about 25 employees at its Plaza 121 office and expects to open at Pioneer Crossing with 35 employees, he said.

“We have outgrown this space,” he said.

When Perez joined Bank of Cascades just over two years ago, seven other employees from his former bank followed him. The commercial banking office has moved from Overland and Eagle to Plaza 121 since First Interstate took over.

Perez said First Interstate also wants to add new services to the Idaho division such as wealth management and payment services, both of which will add more people to the administrative office. He also envisions moving some staff from branches to Pioneer Crossing.

Perez said Pioneer Crossing was chosen for the new First Interstate office because many downtown towers with sufficient space already have bank offices and lease exclusivity that bars other banks from moving in.

“That makes our options very limited,” he said. “The beauty about Pioneer Crossing is the parking garage is next door.”

He said the bank’s visibility at the inbound Connector is valuable and the location is still close to the downtown core, a block away from JUMP and the J.R. Simplot Co. corporate headquarters.

“The core is expanding,” Perez noted. “Pioneer Crossing will be in the core soon.”

About Teya Vitu

Teya Vitu is an Idaho Business Review reporter, covering commercial real estate, construction, transportation and whatever else may intrigue him in the moment. Join me on Twitter at @IBR_TeyaVitu.