A large white frame will encase the mid-block entry to Main + Marketplace, the next-generation makeover of the Eighth Street retail center piece known as Capitol Terrace that was built in 1988.
Main + Marketplace will have a different look. Gone are the black-and-white tiles. The pillars will be white with vertical shop signs projecting outward.
The white frame will also slant out over the sidewalk, said Bryan Vaughn, development partner at Hawkins Companies, which bought Capital Terrace in April 2017 for an undisclosed sum less than $10 million.
Vaughn did acknowledge that $2.1 million is being spent to bring the exterior from 1988 to 2018 and another $100,000 will upgrade the common area in the middle. The new look should be in place by Sept. 30.
The remodel started toward the end of March.
Each Eighth Street corner will have a LED lighted roof-level M that can change colors.
“Ultimately, we want to make it a lively and entertaining venue,” Vaughn said. “We want to make it an experience, a meeting place.”
Hawkins, which is headquartered a few blocks away at BoDo, recently added aluminum composite horizontal awnings above the upper level that also project over the sidewalk.
Main + Marketplace is the default downtown retail center with 16 tenants, the most large-scale retail setting in Boise’s city center. The center provides the retail balance to the restaurant-heavy offerings on the rest of Eighth Street.
“This is the sort of environment where you can have a strong mix of tenants,” Vaughn said. “From our viewpoint, retail is needed.”
Main + Marketplace sits alongside one leg of the Capital City Public Market.
“You want something that is a welcoming design and an update design but one that is also bold, that showcases that this is a dynamic downtown,” said Lynn Hightower, executive director of the Downtown Boise Alliance. “What I think is certainly as impressive is this is a local developer.”
Concurrent to the Hawkins renovations, at least two tenants are doing makeovers of their own. The owners of Pita Pit have rebranded as Jeckyll & Hyde, a lunch spot and late-night venue, and the Jamba Juice owners have switched over to Brü, a self-pour pub.
“We’d love for everybody to update,” said Beau Manwaring, senior leasing manager at Hawkins.
CTA Group is the architect and Guho Corp. is the general contractor.
Ownership was a long time coming for Hawkins Companies owner and CEO, Gary Hawkins. Capitol Terrace was built by Burley clothing store chain owner Jim Roper in 1988 and the building stayed in Roper family ownership until Hawkings bought it. Hawkins, however, was involved early on in leasing tenants for Capitol Terrace.
“He called it Main and Main,” Vaughn said. “It’s hard to argue it’s not the center of downtown.”
Hawkins might Main + Marketplace upward, but there is no immediate time frame.
“The building itself can go eight floors more,” Vaughn noted. “The Ropers designed it as a future tower.”