Grow Smart Award Recipients Announced!

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For Immediate Release:   Idaho Smart Growth Announces 2018 Grow Smart Awards
Date:   October 17, 2018
Contact:  Scot Oliver or Deanna Smith, 208-333-8066

BOISE–Idaho Smart Growth announces the recipients of the 2018 Grow Smart Awards, to be honored at its annual awards celebration on Monday, November 5, at Boise Centre East. This year’s program highlights the importance of urban renewal tools in advancing smart growth projects in Idaho, with a special focus on the Boise Central Urban Renewal District, the state’s first, which sunsets this year. The evening event includes a reception and presentation of this year’s awards, and will feature a short talk by architect and planner Paddy Tillett, of ZGF Architects.

The public is invited; tickets and more information are available from Idaho Smart Growth (208-333-8066 or online here.)

Smart growth strategies help growing communities bring positive social, environmental and economic benefits to all residents, visitors and local businesses. For the past fourteen years Idaho Smart Growth has presented the Grow Smart Awards to recognize projects and plans from around the state that are excellent examples of smart growth “in action.” Award nominations are reviewed and selected by a jury of experts for their application of smart growth principles.

2018 Award Recipients:

523 W Main Street

Renovation and adaptive reuse of two long-vacant buildings in downtown Caldwell dating from the early 1900s. The project preserves some of the city’s history and is a catalyst for new vibrancy, implementing Caldwell’s downtown vision and plan.

Alturas Academy & O.E. Bell Building

Adaptive reuse of the historic 1928 O.E. Bell Junior High School, in Idaho Falls. The 2016 restoration provides a state-of-the-art home for the Alturas International Charter School and retains an existing restaurant.

Fire Stations 8 and 4

Two new Boise fire stations that incorporate pedestrian-friendly design, high-performance sustainability strategies, public programming and open space with public art in their neighborhood infill redevelopments.

Garden City Artisans™ Wayfinding

The project encourages connections among Garden City visitors, residents, artisans, businesses and other amenities through graphic design, signs and maps. Strong collaborations help this community stake out a unique identity.

The Grove Plaza

A catalyst project begun 30 years ago and recently refreshed that has been the center of downtown Boise’s dramatic transformation from a landscape dominated by surface parking and car commerce to a thriving and completely urban capital city.

Leadville Bikeway

Community engagement helped propel this first low-stress bike route in Ada County Highway District’s Roadways to Bikeways Master Plan. Leadville Avenue parallels a heavy-traffic Boise arterial, offering a calmer and safer alternative.

Moneyball for MPOs

COMPASS, the Boise/Nampa metro planning organization, developed this set of performance measures with good data inputs to assist regional leaders in making better and more objective transportation investment decisions.

Mountain West Bank, State and 16th Branch

Renovation and expansion of a downtown Boise bank that improved walkability, accessibility, sustainability and connectivity while adding to the neighborhood’s sense of place.

Twin Falls Main Avenue

This major reconstruction of Twin Falls’ main downtown street creates public gathering space, a new city hall, more pedestrian-oriented streets and other amenities as a magnet for new mixed-use private investment.

The Watercooler

Downtown infill mixed-use project in Boise, providing 37 apartments and live-work units of various sizes along with a street-level café and pedestrian friendly outdoor plaza at 14th Street.

Doug Fowler—Charles Hummel Award

This award is given by the Idaho Smart Growth Board of Directors in honor of architect, civic leader and Idaho Smart Growth co-founder Charles Hummel. The 2018 award is for Doug Fowler, developer and civic leader in Boise. Doug is honored for his steadfast work helping the Harris family realize the Harris Ranch development, as well as his longstanding dedication to Idaho Smart Growth and many other related nonprofits.

Idaho Smart Growth is a statewide nonprofit organization that brings people together to create stronger and healthier communities. For more information about the Grow Smart Awards and Idaho Smart Growth contact 208-333-8066 or go to

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