Spokane Journal of Business

Ignite cda issues request for Midtown development proposals

New development ideas sought for half-acre site

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Coeur d’Alene’s urban renewal agency, which operates as ignite cda, has issued a request for development proposals for land it owns in the city’s Midtown corridor.

Located at 813 to 823 N. Fourth, the property totals 23,000 square feet—or a half-acre—of developable space, says Tony Berns, ignite cda’s executive director.

Most of the development site is vacant, although a retail building there that houses the Paris Flea Market would be demolished as part of a new project, the request-for-proposals notice says.

The properties are zoned for what’s called Midtown overlay land uses, a broad designation that encourages a “denser urban fabric” with multistory buildings that can reach up to 45 feet in height, Berns says.

Ignite cda has owned that property since the early 2000s.

Two earlier proposed projects for the property have been withdrawn, Berns says.

Modern Theater, a community performing arts group, had envisioned developing a $12 million theater building there, but that proposal fell through “on their end,” says Berns.

Prior to that, Boise-based The Housing Co. had planned to develop a $9 million mixed-use retail and affordable housing project, which received objections from neighbors, he says.

Now, Berns says, nearby residents “want to be involved in the process and see what we get.”

Ideal proposals for that location would include active street-level businesses, such as restaurants, coffee shops, or retail stores that attract pedestrian traffic, he asserts.

In recent years, the agency and the city of Coeur d’Alene have invested $4 million in Midtown beautification projects that included street and sidewalk improvements along a 10-block stretch of Fourth Street.

The request for proposals says applicants must include preliminary concept development plans, proposed phasing, and a preliminary project financial plan.

The deadline to submit proposals is Jan. 28.

Other Midtown corridor businesses near the ignite cda site include Capone’s Pub & Grill, Midtown Pub, Idaho Youth Ranch thrift store, Midtown Bluebird restaurant, and technology and tool training workshop Gizmo-CDA Inc., Berns says.

Ignite cda works both independently and through collaborative partnerships with public agencies and private parties focusing on master planning, historic preservation, infrastructure, and facility development.

The agency was established in 1997 and operated as Lake City Development Corp. before changing its name to ignite cda in 2015.

Samantha Peone
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