Bonneville Hotel renovation inches forward

The renovation of the historic Bonneville Hotel is estimated to cost $10.89 million. Post Register file

The Idaho Falls Redevelopment Agency approved a motion Thursday to continue to work with The Housing Company to renovate the historic Bonneville Hotel.

The Housing Company, a Boise-based nonprofit construction company, was selected by the agency in August 2016 in partnership with Myers Anderson Architects, from Pocatello, and Idaho Falls-based Bateman-Hall Inc.

The project originally was projected to cost $10.89 million, according to the project proposal.

Brad Cramer, city of Idaho Falls planning and building director, said preparations for the work on the Bonneville Hotel are ongoing.

Changes were made to the original proposal prepared by The Housing Company, including relocation of the elevator in the building, the change from 35 housing units to 36 and the change from approximately 5,000 square feet of commercial space to a 5,239 square foot commercial space.

The Housing Company is in talks with a local restaurant owner who is interested in the commercial property. The company is considering a rooftop dining area and inside dining area for a Brazilian steakhouse, a bakery on the west end of the building and a market open for daily use.

“The Housing Company team is fully engaged in this,” said Jerry Myers of Myers and Anderson Architects.

Kelsch property

The Redevelopment Agency discussed the issues surrounding the construction of two new buildings on the Kelsch property, a vacant, partially paved lot that was the previous site of the Saving Center grocery store, which was demolished in 2014.

The first of the two buildings will be a single-level building with retail areas and a restaurant and the second building will have a retail and restaurant area on the main floor and office spaces on the second and third floors.

Cramer said one issue the agency is facing with this property is providing the adequate number of parking stalls per 1,000 square feet to match city requirements.

The agency is considering installing an underground parking structure to meet the city’s requirements.

“We are making progress,” Cramer said. “Obviously the parking issue is a big one.”

Cramer said a development agreement is being formed and will be presented at the agency’s next meeting March 16.