Zions Bank broke ground today on the 18-story building that will take the place of the massive hole in the ground that has long been a feature of downtown Boise.
The corner at 8th and Main has been vacant since the late 1980s, when a fire destroyed the Eastman building. That made the groundbreaking a special kind of celebration for the city leaders, real estate developers and others who turned out. The groundbreaking even included a Native American drummer, brought in to break The Hole’s supposed curse.
The new $76 million building will serve as Idaho headquarters for Zions Bank. It will also include a great deal of office and retail space. Lew Manglos, with the Boise office of Colliers International, says that’s needed. The vacancy rate for office space downtown is very low – around 6 percent. A 9 to 11 percent rate is considered healthy, Manglos says.
He believes the new building will help draw businesses to Boise as the economy continues its slow turnaround. “You can run into a situation where you don’t have enough space in your downtown core to provide enough alternatives for a firm that might be considering relocating its offices to Boise,” he says.
“I know it will add to the vibrancy of the downtown. It will have an effect, I believe of attracting additional businesses to the downtown and the downtown periphery.”
Two restaurants and the law firm Holland & Hart are among the tenants who have signed on so far.