This apartment building proposed in heart of downtown would be one of Boise’s tallest.
A Wisconsin developer wants to build a 19-story building with high-end apartments between the former Concordia University School of Law and Chipotle Mexican Grill on Front Street.
The building, named Ovation, would have 209 apartments and 259 parking spaces, plus 85 bicycle spaces, in an interior garage. An application filed with the city of Boise promises the structure would have “breathtaking views” and “top-tier amenities.”
If built, it would be the third-tallest building in Boise, at 231 feet. Eighth & Main has 18 floors but with a parapet is 323 feet tall, according to Emporis, which compiles building heights around the world. U.S. Bank Plaza, with 20 floors, rises 267 feet.
The developer, Hovde Properties of Madison, Wisconsin, says it plans to spend more than $60 million. Construction is expected to begin in fall 2021 and be completed by summer 2023, the company said in a Boise city filing.
Founded in 1933, the third-generation, family-owned company has built commercial and residential developments — including apartments, condominiums and single-family homes — mostly in the Midwest.
In a letter to the city, Randy Guenther, president of Hovde Properties, said the building at 521 W. Front St. will be patterned after a 2015 project housing project in Madison named Ovation 309.
Hovde has not indicated how much it will charge for its Boise apartments, but describes the Ovation 309 units as “luxury apartments.” Rents there range from $1,645 per month for a one-bedroom apartment with 580 square feet to $1,810 for a one-bedroom unit with 638 square feet. A two-bedroom apartment with 1,049 square feet is listed at $2,955.
That’s roughly on par with The Fowler Apartments, which were Boise’s most expensive when they opened in 2018 at 505 W. Broad St. Studios there range from 615 to 640 square feet and start at $1,572 per month. Two-bedroom units range up to 945 square feet and start at $2,235 per month.
“The Madison development is a well-received urban mixed-use development consisting of over 240 apartments, commercial spaces and structured parking, which was integrated with a City of Madison fire station,” Guenther wrote. “By building upon our previous experience and providing our best-in-class in-house management, we believe Ovation will find its place at the top with respect to design standards and resident enjoyment.”
Eric Hovde, Hovde Properties’ CEO, is also the CEO of Sunwest Bank, which has branches in Boise and Middleton and a corporate office in Nampa. Sunwest is a subsidiary of Hovde Properties. Hovde’s brother, Steve Hovde, serves as chairman of the company and is CEO of affiliated Hovde Financial.
“Collectively, the Hovde family of companies is looking forward to deepening their commitment to the city of Boise and the Treasure Valley area with long-term, high-quality investments and community engagement,” Guenther said.
The company’s plans call for 98 one-bedroom apartments, 79 two-bedroom, 19 studios and 13 three-bedroom units.
The building would contain an interior parking garage on the first five floors, which would be mostly shielded from view from the outside. Apartments would be located on floors 2 through 18, with an outdoor rooftop patio and an indoor-outdoor lounge on the 19th floor, according to site plans. The ground floor would also contain restaurant and retail space, a fitness center, bike storage and offices.
The tower portion of the building would be set back from the lower floors. The tower would also include recessed balconies to offer privacy to residents and shield balcony contents from public view.
The top of the building, Guenther wrote, “is defined by a large amount of glass on the tower to help illuminate the building during the evening hours, which will help make this building a significant icon with the city skyline.” The top floor would include a roof canopy to provide outdoor shade to the building during warmer months.
The site contains a one-story office building with 21,534 square feet, according to the Ada County Assessor’s Office. The building, built in 1953 and remodeled in 2014, was formerly used by the Boise campus of the University of Idaho. It would be demolished to make room for the new apartments.