The Boise Planning and Zoning Commission approved the Honors College building application Nov. 9, but the approval is contingent upon the university getting the property rezoned and its new master plan approved. The former church property is not included in the current master plan and it is not zoned for university use.
To build the $43 million facility, Boise State has entered an agreement with a private developer, Tennessee-based EDR, in which the university will lease the site to EDR, which will build, own and operate the building and collect rent from students. After 50 years, EDR will turn over the building to Boise State.
Mike Sumpter, Boise State associate vice president for Campus Planning and Facilities, said if Planning and Zoning makes a recommendation at its Jan. 4 meeting and City Council makes a decision at its January meeting, “that would keep us on track for things that we’ve already committed. … In other words, we start to incur consequences if we’re held up beyond that very much.”
“This is exactly what I feared last month,” Planning Commissioner Chris Danley told the commission, referring to Boise State putting in the Honors College building application before the commission before its master plan and rezoning applications.
“I don’t know if BSU has their ducks in a row because what I see us doing is potentially approving a project before the (master) plan. … I’ve got significant heartburn with that,” Danley said at the Nov. 9 hearing, during which he cast the sole vote against the approving the Honors College building application.