A Lusk for Living

If you’re not familiar with the Lusk Street neighborhood, it’s not difficult to see why. It’s something of an overlooked area of town with a few too many dirt lots and underutilized parcels. This could all be changing rapidly thanks to new businesses, the growth of Boise State University, a new long-term master plan, and four apartment projects (one already under construction) potentially offering a total of 541-units.

Here’s the skinny:


River Edge Apartments

175 units
Status: Fully Approved
Design Review Application (Click Documents, Scroll Down for Elevations, Renderings, Etc.)
Notes: You might have heard about this a few times in the news.

Originally proposed in 2012, this project received full approval from the city. For reasons unknown, groundbreaking has taken a little longer than planned. In February 2014, the project was granted a 180-day extension on its building permit, with construction anticipated for Spring 2014.


Boise Heights

Status: Under Construction
Design Review Application (Click Documents, Scroll Down for Elevations, Renderings, Etc.)
Notes: This looks like a lively addition… But… must… resist.. urge to say it…

“Another brown building???? Awwwww…….”

Boy I’m bored of brown/tan/earthy buildings in Boise. Yes, I get we’re in a desert, we’re all about sagebrush, yada yada, I’m reminded of that every time I look at the foothills. Brown makes me think of drought… or cardboard… I practically need a glass of water looking at the Grove Hotel with its… brown… browniness and bite-sized windows.

In all seriousness I wish the developers success and congrats on getting this project under construction. *smooches*


Lusk Place Apartments

Status: Undergoing Building Permit Approval.
Design Review Application (Click Documents, Scroll Down for Elevations, Renderings, Etc.)
Ooh, now here’s something different.

I’m digging the idea to incorporate Spanish Mission styles to echo the Boise Depot. My only concern is that if one is going to reference the Depot, it really must be done carefully and with respect to historical style traditions. Confession: I’m not an expert on Spanish Mission architecture, so perhaps my readers can chime in on their opinions. It seems to me though that wrong material choices, sloppy details, and poor execution could completely derail this otherwise really neat idea.



Sherwood Apartments

Status: Undergoing Building Permit Approval.
Design Review Application (Click Documents, Scroll Down for Elevations, Renderings, Etc.)

Not much more to add, the visual says it all. This proposed project doesn’t have as large a footprint as some of the above projects, but it should add some good density to the area. It is currently undergoing approval for a Building Permit.

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Altogether I think the neighborhood is loaded with all kinds of fun, quirky potential. Because of the proximity to Boise State, the nearby parks and museums, the Morrison Center, and the Boise Bicycle Project, my hunch is that the apartments will considerably boost the neighborhood’s population of young, creative people who enjoy outdoorsy activities. It’s close enough to be influenced by the culture/creativity that’s coming from its surroundings, but isolated enough to develop a niche character of its own.

But I also dearly hope the rapid growth doesn’t lead to serious congestion issues (I’m already not a big fan of the Capitol/University intersection).  Here is the most current plan to prepare for this growth.

(There’s also some cool little goodies like guidelines for urban form and policies to create a sense of place)

But what do you think? I’d love to hear your opinions in the comment section below, no matter if you agree or disagree! (Also if you spot any inaccuracies, please don’t hesitate to correct me.)

3 thoughts on “A Lusk for Living

  1. Daniel West

    Thanks so much for posting this with the overview map! I can’t wait to see what happens to that area. I hope the Lusk Place apartments work out, and not end up looking sloppy :(

  2. Mallory Seiniger

    I would also love to see an incorporation of Spanish style architecture. In South America the arches, shingles, and stucco are so beautiful. The colorful tiles and artwork are everywhere you turn and it adds so much personality and liveliness to a city. Although my absolute favorite aspect of their buildings and layouts are the skylights and indoor gardens, the open community space and incorporation of nature in a building is plain awesome. I am however concerned with the aspect of traffic and increase of cars. I would love to see some sort of tram that runs downtown and through BSU for an increase in the use of public transportation, as well as large walking paths that provide shortcuts for those who would otherwise need a car.

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