Albertson Family Foundation awards $3.5M to whitewater park
The J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation announced today a $3.5 million grant to finish the second phase of the Boise River Park, a gift that will further revitalize the whitewater recreation park area in downtown Boise’s West End.
The grant provides for three new play waves, a slalom course, improved river access, river hazard removal, floodway improvements, river access from Veteran’s Pond and an additional viewing plaza. The gift is part of the Albertson Family Foundation’s 2016 strategy to grant up to $12 million to help transform communities and Idaho prosper.
Combined with the revitalized Greenbelt, Veteran’s Memorial Park, Bernadine Quinn Park and Esther Simplot Park, the new whitewater park area will provide countless opportunities for Idaho’s children and families to fish, kayak, stand-up paddle board, surf, swim, walk, jog and cycle.
“Our strategy is to invest in projects and ideas that can transform communities,” said Albertson Family Foundation Executive Director Roger Quarles. “There is no doubt that this project will jumpstart the West End economically and provide world-class recreation opportunities for visitors and the more than 45,500 residents who live within walking distance of the park.”
Quarles said the park will be an area for Idahoans to learn, recreate, socialize and challenge themselves in new ways.
The Albertson Family Foundation gave $1.7 million for phase one of the park, which opened in 2012. By the time the two-phase project is complete, the Albertson Family Foundation will have invested $5.2 million into the approximately $12.2 million project. The City of Boise will match the phase two grant.
With mixed-use neighborhood shops, warehouse-ready commercial businesses and new developments from State Street to Fairview Avenue, Boise Mayor Dave Bieter said the area is poised for the “big-time.”
“The Boise River Park is already helping to redefine Boise and downtown’s west end in profound ways,” Bieter said. “With the generosity of the Albertson Family Foundation, we will continue to build on the park’s success by creating a uniquely Boise recreation experience, while spurring further investment in a neighborhood with extraordinary potential.”
Historically, the area was highly industrial, but an extensive restoration project brought the area back to life with 107 acres of parks, 63 acres of water and 2 miles of river frontage.
The project will begin fall of 2017 and finish in 2019. For more information about the Boise River Park, click here.
About the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation
The J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation is a Boise-based, private family foundation committed to the vision of limitless learning for all Idahoans. In 2016, the Albertson Family Foundation will celebrate 50 years of giving, totaling almost $700 million to Idaho children, families and communities in the areas of learning innovations, community investments and awareness. The Albertson Family Foundation honors the legacy of Joe and Kathryn Albertson, founders of the Albertsons grocery store. For more information, visit jkaf.org.