Work should begin by early November on the second phase of Boise’s Whitewater Park, Boise Parks and Recreation director Doug Holloway said Monday.
Crews have to wait until irrigation season ends and the Boise River drops to winter levels, Holloway said. After that, they’ll begin work on the riverbank. They’ll add tiered seating and build take-out and put-in points for surf boards, kayaks and other water craft.
Originally, the city planned to install wave-making features in the river this year and do the bank work next year, Holloway said. Now, those projects will flip-flop. The city wants to make sure it has plenty of time to obtain permits for the wave-shaping devices, Holloway said.
Since the opening of its first phase in 2012, the whitewater park has been a big lure for surfers, kayakers and other types of wave junkies. The park’s popularity has only increased with the recent opening of Esther Simplot Park nearby and the construction of a beach at Quinn’s Pond just east of the whitewater park.
The whitewater park’s second phase has been planned for several years. The city has already spent $1.8 million on design work and new equipment that diverts water from the river into an irrigation canal, Holloway said.
The second phase will include an adjustable wave shaper similar to the one in the first phase. Other in-stream features will include boulders that produce a variety of wave types for a range of skill levels, Holloway said. The boulders will be similar to what’s in place at Kelly’s Whitewater Park in Cascade.
The Boise project’s expected completion date hasn’t changed. Holloway said he hopes to open the park’s second phase by summer of 2019.
The J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation donated $1.7 million for the construction of the park’s first phase and $3.5 million for the second phase. The Boise City Council is scheduled to officially accept the second phase money Tuesday at its regular meeting.
The city will cover the rest of the second phase’s cost, expected at about $7 million.