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Costco invites Meridian neighbors to come talk about proposed store’s new look

Costco Wholesale proposed this sculpted look with a cool gray stucco finish for its planned Meridian store. Neighbors objected, saying it doesn’t fit in with the look of the neighborhood. Company representatives said they will present additional concepts at a neighborhood meeting.
Costco Wholesale proposed this sculpted look with a cool gray stucco finish for its planned Meridian store. Neighbors objected, saying it doesn’t fit in with the look of the neighborhood. Company representatives said they will present additional concepts at a neighborhood meeting. Artist's rendering provided by the city of Meridian

Costco Wholesale plans to share exterior design ideas for its Meridian store at a neighborhood meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 14.

The meeting will take place at 6 p.m. at Meridian City Hall, 33 E. Broadway Ave.

The story below was published July 25, 2018, under the headline, “Costco came up with a new look for its Meridian store. Neighbors still don’t like it.”

What if Costco Wholesale held a meeting to gauge neighbors’ reaction to proposed changes to the exterior of the planned Meridian store and no one showed up?

That’s what happened on June 14, company representatives told the Meridian City Council this week. So they were surprised when neighbors of the proposed store at Chinden Boulevard and Ten Mile Road objected to the latest drawings of the outside of the building.

The company came up with the new look after council members and neighbors raised objections earlier about the standard brown exteriors of Costco stores. The council approved the company’s application in April on condition that it return for council approval of the exterior design. Costco hopes to complete the store by 2020.

Neighbors who oppose the sleek gray exterior look submitted by the company told the council on Tuesday that they weren’t notified about the neighborhood meeting or they would have attended.

Jane Albert said the revised plan looked like a “mash-up of the same old design.” She told the council she’d like to see a blend of colors and textures for the building.

Michael Battaglia said the proposed gray exterior would contrast badly with houses in the neighborhood, which are mostly a mixture of browns and tans. “You’d have this gray box sitting there that’s really out of character,” he said.

Rickey Burke, one of three neighbors who have gone to court to challenge the council’s decision approving the store location, said the proposed building has a “cookie-cutter” design. He suggested the company consider something like the design of the new Albertsons store that opened last week on Broadway Avenue in Boise.

“There’s a lot of originality there,” Burke said. “A lof of thought was given to it.”

Peter Kahn, an assistant Costco vice president for real estate development, told the audience that landscaping and berms, along with other retail buildings planned for the site, will shield the Costco building from view for people traveling along Chinden, Ten Mile and Lost Rapids roads.

“You’re going to have little peak-a-boo views from the roadway of our building,” he said.

The neighbors urged the council to hold off voting on the revised plan and instead ask Costco to meet with neighbors and provide a variety of possible exterior designs that could be incorporated in the 165,000-square-foot building..

Company representatives said they would schedule another meeting and do a better job of informing people of when it will take place.

Mayor Tammy de Weerd said she appreciated Kahn’s offer to schedule another neighborhood meeting and take residents’ views into account.

“I think you can do better to make it look a little bit more integrated with the surrounding areas,” she said.

The council postponed a decision on the design to a special meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11.

John Sowell: 208-377-6423, @JohnWSowell.

Gone is the Polish dog, a wonderfully boring and simple offering in Costco’s food court. It’s been replaced by a vegetarian al pastor salad.

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