The Boise City Council approved the agreement for the Spaulding Ranch land swap between the city and development company LocalConstruct at its regular meeting Tuesday.
The agreement is the first step in a land exchange in which the city would trade 6.5 acres it owns at Main Street and Whitewater Boulevard for the 20-acre historic ranch on N. Cole Road owned by LocalConstruct.
"While we're excited about the possibility, this is just the beginning of the process," said Council Member Elaine Clegg. "But let's keep our fingers crossed."
The project, she added, could be a great one for the city.
The landowners have a 30-day due diligence period to determine land values and decide whether to proceed. The Spaulding Ranch, which was an operating ranch between the late 1890s and the 1990s, is one of nine historic districts in the city. City spokesman Mike Journee said that if the city acquires the site, it could become a cultural attraction including park or open space, or include an interpretive trail.