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LCDC Lake District Strategic Plan Lake City Development Corporation

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership Leland Consulting Group April 2003


CREDITS LCDC Board Charlie Nipp, Chairman Jim Elder, Vice Chairman Paul Anderson Jim Duncan Brad Jordan Dave Patzer Dixie Reid Rod Colwell Deanna Goodlander LCDC Staff Tony Berns, Executive Director Mayor of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho Sandi Bloem Planning and Zoning Chairman John Bruning Consultants Planning and Urban Design Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership Real Estate Market Strategy Leland Consulting Group

Lake District Strategic Plan

Lake City Development Corporation Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


TA B L E

OF

CONTENTS

Executive Summary

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Introduction • District Assets and Constraints • Market Summary • Opportunity and Challenge

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Process • Planning Context • Stakeholder Interviews

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• Goals and Objectives • Vision • Framework – Context – Civic Space – Frontage – Existing Land Use – Preferred Land Use – Development Opportunities – Existing and Proposed Parking – Existing and Proposed Landscape – Pedestrian Improvements

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Planning

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Lake City Development Corporation

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


TA B L E

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CONTENTS

CONTINUED

Implementation Strategy • Revitalization Principles • District Implementation Strategy • Specific Strategies – Downtown – Downtown-Midtown – Downtown-Northwest Boulevard – Downtown-Midtown-Northwest Boulevard – Midtown – Northwest Boulevard • Prioritization Matrix Next Steps

Lake District Strategic Plan

Lake City Development Corporation Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

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April 2003


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The LCDC Lake District Strategic Plan is an implementation-oriented plan for three districts within the Lake District urban renewal area of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. These three districts include: Downtown, Midtown and Northwest Boulevard. The strategic plan is a “blueprint” intended to guide the Board of the Lake City Development Corporation (LCDC) in future planning, projects, programs, partnerships and actions in these districts. The plan lays a foundation for action by evaluating and describing: District Assets and Constraints, a Market Summary, Opportunity and Challenge, the Planning Context, information gathered in Stakeholder Interviews, district Goals and Objectives, and a Vision. In response, Framework Plans identify existing and preferred patterns in each district for Civic Space, Frontage, Land Use, Development Opportunities, Parking, Landscape and Pedestrian Improvements. An Implementation Strategy follows with Revitalization Principles and Specific Strategies for each district. Finally, a Prioritization Matrix identifies those recommendations to be undertaken in the short term as Next Steps. Key recommendations of this strategic plan include the following: Downtown § Partner with cultural providers to develop Downtown and the Education Corridor as a Cultural Center. § Commission a parking study to determine where capacity is needed and implement innovative parking and management solutions. § Expand and enhance the Federal, County and City governmental campuses to reinforce Downtown’s civic identity. § Encourage urban multi-family housing infill and mixed-use development. § Develop Garden Avenue as a connection between the Education Corridor and residential neighborhoods to the east and rehabilitate and develop new housing along this connection. § Improve the quality, access and programming of lakefront and riverfront parks and public spaces. § Designate and improve Pedestrian Streets within the district to invite pedestrian use.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Executive Summary

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


Midtown § Establish 4th Street and Roosevelt Avenue as a mixed-use neighborhood node and “heart” for Midtown. § Remove one-way couplet on 3rd/4th Street south of Harrison Avenue to support neighborhood retail and services. § Expand the Midtown district to the north to include vacated auto dealerships and land bank sites for an employment center. § Encourage mixed-use development in Midtown with residential uses above retail and services. § Make streetscape and storefront improvements to enhance the quality of the pedestrian environment and improve the image of the district. Northwest Boulevard § Seek partnerships to plan for North Idaho College, University of Idaho, and other cultural uses in the Education Corridor in a park-like setting between the river and Northwest Boulevard. § Implement landscape and streetscape improvements on Northwest Boulevard and Ramsey Road to enhance their gateway quality, visual continuity and connections to river and trail access points.

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Executive Summary

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Executive Summary


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Lake District Strategic Plan

Executive Summary Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


INTRODUCTION The purpose of this strategic plan is to establish a vision of what three districts within Coeur d’Alene’s Lake District could become, and to identify a series of projects that can begin to realize that vision.

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Over the past few years, plans and public workshops on various aspects of the city’s future have yielded a valuable cache of ideas and information. The Board of the Lake City Development Corporation (LCDC) was concerned that this thinking should be translated into action. They identified Downtown, Midtown, and Northwest Boulevard as three districts with the potential to set an example of self-renewal for the whole city. These three districts include a full range of urban land uses, and include properties in the best and worst conditions. By implementing a series of related projects, each of these districts can be propelled towards a bright future, capitalizing on existing assets and latent possibilities to realize their full potential as vital components of a vital community.

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This strategic plan sets out the process and thinking that led from LCDC intention to an action plan. It details what the consultant team discovered through interviews with over fifty individuals representing diverse interests. It outlines visions for the future, and recommendations for immediate initiatives and subsequent actions.

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Introduction

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Introduction

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DISTRICT ASSETS

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CONSTRAINTS

An analysis of the assets and constraints for the city and the three districts is the starting point. Coeur d’Alene possesses some extraordinary qualities and features upon which a vision for the future can be built. This analysis also identifies the barriers that stand in the way of successful implementation of projects that can realize a strong and positive vision. Some projects may need to be modified in order to work around these constraints, while other projects may be the first steps to removing the barriers altogether. ASSETS As confirmed in the stakeholder interviews with which the planning process began, Coeur d’Alene’s strongest assets are based in its physical location along the Spokane River and the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene. Its natural setting allows for scenic vistas from many locations throughout the three districts and encourages an outdoor culture of biking, walking, and water recreation. An abbreviated summary of assets that benefit the entire city includes: Coeur d’Alene § Proximity to the lake, parks and other recreational assets; § Mature neighborhoods with relatively inexpensive housing; § Growing influence of higher education; § An attractive main street – Sherman Avenue; § Diverse development opportunities; § Civic champions in the community; § Strong sense of civic pride; § Resort development

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Introduction

District Assets and Constraints


Each district has it own unique set of assets as well: Downtown § Quality, destination retailers, restaurants, and resort; § Pedestrian-friendly; § Relatively full occupancy; § Attractive streetscape; § Many locally-owned businesses; § Proximity to the lake and public parks; Midtown § Adjacent to residential areas; § Close and direct access to freeway and Downtown; § Close to Education Corridor; § Acts as a gateway to Downtown; § Mature, wooded landscape; Northwest Boulevard § Close to freeway and Downtown; § High quality landscaping; § River frontage; § Education Corridor potential; § Multiple new development opportunities; § Acts as a gateway to Downtown.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Introduction District Assets

April 2003


CONSTRAINTS Implementation of the plan requires an honest assessment of barriers and constraints to development. By clearly identifying things that stand in the way of achieving the vision, the plan can address these issues through deliberate actions, policies, and projects that will methodically remove the barriers and clear the path for successful implementation. Constraints that affect Coeur d’Alene as a whole include: Coeur d’Alene § In transition from a resource based economy; § Low wages; § Seasonal economy – businesses struggle in off-season; § Contentious political environment – resistant to change; § Losing businesses and tax dollars to Post Falls; § Outdated, zoning code and comprehensive plan; § No public transportation;

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Introduction

District Constraints


Each district has its own constraints that are limited to their own geography: Downtown § Few local services; § No relation to the waterfront; § Boat-trailer parking dominates waterfront; § Perceived parking problems; § Many struggling retailers; § Lack of class A office space; § Few housing opportunities; § Often viewed by locals as “for tourists only” § High property costs; Midtown § One-way, high-speed traffic; § Deteriorated and vacant retail buildings; § Vacant auto lots; § Weak retail uses § Deteriorated streetscape and sidewalks; Northwest Boulevard § Limited public access to river; § Few street connections to either side; § Auto-dominated; § Water treatment plant location is an obstacle to development; § Active mill blocks redevelopment opportunities; § Premix site has high potential, but is not in LCDC boundaries.

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Introduction

District Constraints

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MARKET SUMMARY Demographic trends are positive for Coeur d’Alene as a whole. The city and region are experiencing strong population growth. Between 1990 and 2000, Coeur d’Alene’s population grew from 24,563 to 34,514, an increase of over 40 percent. However, most of that growth is not occurring in the central city. Rather, it is happening at the fringes. Inner neighborhoods are growing, but at a much slower rate than for the city as a whole. Also significant is that while incomes have risen since 1990, the 2000 median household income for Coeur d’Alene ($33,001) is almost 13 percent lower than for Kootenai County as a whole ($37,754). This is lower than the median household income for both Idaho ($37,572) and for the United States ($41,994). Raising the incomes of residents in close-in Coeur d’Alene will be a key factor in revitalizing the three districts. The real estate market is widely varied by district and even within each district. Current commercial rents Downtown are too low to support new construction given the high land prices – this is evidenced by the lack of new development in recent years. Until either land prices drop to levels commensurate with rents, or rents rise to levels commensurate with land prices, very little new development will occur in the Downtown core. However, nearby neighborhoods like Midtown, Northwest Boulevard, and even streets just a block or two away from Sherman Avenue have lower land prices that might facilitate new development. It is likely that these nearby areas will be the first to develop.

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Introduction

Market Summary


Residential prices show a steady upward trend with distance from Downtown. That is, the central city is home to the area’s lowest housing prices (with the exception of the Fort Grounds neighborhood and lake side properties). The up side to these low values is that home ownership is affordable to many residents and property acquisition for redevelopment projects will be less expensive. Commercial development, particularly retail, is likely to continue to focus near the freeway and at Silverlake Mall due to the lower cost of development in those locations and the overwhelming concentration of other retailers. However, Downtown has built a strong niche as a pedestrian-oriented shopping district with unique stores and quality restaurants that cannot be found elsewhere in Coeur d’Alene. New residential projects and public projects such as the library, McEuen Park, and streetscape improvements can have a cumulative effect in strengthening this marketplace and in sustaining Downtown’s position as the government and cultural heart of the community.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Introduction

Market Summary

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OPPORTUNITY & CHALLENGE The overall opportunity addressed by LCDC through this strategic plan is to improve wealth and livability in three inner city districts by capitalizing on existing assets. This is to be accomplished through implementation of a large number of projects, big, and small, that will collectively bring about significant beneficial change. The challenge is to identify projects that the community is motivated to implement, and that will contribute to such change. Wherever the prospects of personal gain can be aligned with community objectives, an opportunity exists for a realizable project. Public funds can be used most effectively to leverage private investment in such circumstances. Successful programs typically leverage more than $4 of private investment for every public dollar invested. Large and ambitious projects can bring about dramatic change. However, such projects typically take a long time to realize, and are vulnerable to delay. Such opportunity should certainly be pursued, but so too should smaller projects that can demonstrate to the public and to potential investors that the plan is already being implemented, and that visible progress is being made.

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Introduction

Opportunity and Challenge


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Lake District Strategic Plan

Introduction

Opportunity and Challenge

April 2003


PROCESS Recent plans and numerous public meetings provided LCDC with a wealth of information, but no specific plan for action. It is the purpose of this strategic plan to determine what those actions should be. The consultant team was introduced to the project in a workshop with members of the LCDC Board. Goals and objectives were derived from this discourse, defining a clear direction for the strategic plan. After assembling and digesting available information, the consultant team undertook a series of confidential interviews with representatives of key businesses, agencies and institutions. The purpose of the interviews was to verify the apparent values of the community, and to gauge willingness to invest in initiatives that could improve the wealth and livability in one or more of the three districts. A sequence of framework maps was developed as a means of consolidating and analyzing information gathered on each district. Collectively, they provide an inventory of what exists, but also provide clues about what each area could become. Opportunities for each district were exposed, and an overall vision developed. A strategy was proposed for realization of the vision through a series of projects. A few key projects were investigated in greater detail so that the costs, actions, and timing of each could be understood sufficiently to enable the LCDC Board to decide on an appropriate course of action.

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PLANNING CONTEXT In recent years, a number of plans and studies have been directed at bringing about an appropriate future for different parts and aspects of the City of Coeur d’Alene. These have included the Hyett-Palma Study on Downtown development economics, and the Walker Macy Study on public open spaces. There has been much public involvement in these and other planning efforts. Much of the accumulated thinking and opinion was drawn together in the Coeur d’Alene 2020 project, which distilled community intention into twelve concise goals: Arts and Culture – Improve and increase the City of Coeur d’Alene’s sponsorship of arts and culture. Downtown Vitality – Develop a plan to increase Downtown vitality. Economic Development – Ensure that Coeur d’Alene has a diversified economy that pays employees at or above the national average wage. Education – Ensure that our educational partners have the resources to provide lifelong learning opportunities to all community members. Health Care – Provide access to quality health care options for all community members. Infrastructure – Develop a plan that recognizes the needs of residents in the analysis and implementation of infrastructure improvements and growth. Lake Coeur d’Alene – Preserve the natural beauty that is Lake Coeur d’Alene, while improving public access and the overall quality of this community asset. Neighborhoods – Provide vibrant neighborhoods where people are united to form a strong sense of community. Planning – Coordinate community efforts to create a systematic plan that encourages the vital and unique nature of Coeur d’Alene. Public Safety – Create a community-oriented public safety force with ample resources to address population growth. Recreation – Develop and maintain year-round, affordable, and accessible recreational opportunities for all citizens. Transportation – Provide convenient and accessible, efficient, affordable, and environmentally responsible transportation options for all citizens of the Coeur d’Alene community. Each of these was expanded with a series of subordinate goals, setting a direction for the next two decades of planning in the city.

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Framework Plans

Planning Context


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Process

Planning Context

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STAKEHOLDER INTERVIEWS As part of the planning process, the consultant team met with numerous community members to discuss the future of the three districts. Over 50 stakeholders attended a series of one-hour small group discussion sessions on September 10, 2002. Participants included small business owners, local developers, property owners, representatives of educational institutions, residents, activists, and others. The purpose of the confidential interview sessions was to understand what the “real” issues are that are shaping Coeur d’Alene’s future in order to better define visions and plans for the three districts. A second purpose was to probe the willingness of those in a position to do so to invest in improvements. Rather than use a list of predetermined questions, the team facilitated a free flowing discussion with the stakeholders. As is the case in any community, the stakeholders expressed a wide range of opinions and ideas. Many comments were consistent from group to group, but there were also conflicting views. Many of the comments address issues that go beyond the physical aspects of the three districts or LCDC’s charter, but they nonetheless helped the team to identify priority issues to be addressed. The summary of non-confidential comments is far too lengthy to list here, but those comments and ideas formed the basis upon which the district visions and action plans have been developed.

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Stakeholder Interviews


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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

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GOALS

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OBJECTIVES

The twelve overall goals developed by Coeur d’Alene 2020 pertain to the whole city, yet provide a valuable context for the more specific goals and objectives that are directed to the three districts that are the subject of this plan. In briefing the consultant team on its intentions, the LCDC Board conveyed the following directions: q q q q

Create an urban design development plan that will provide LCDC with an ‘end-state’ vision for the URA District. Guide LCDC tactically and strategically towards investment and growth opportunities in the District. Provide a plan that is an effective marketing tool to encourage investment by others in the District. Present the plan so that it will educate the concerned public in Coeur D’Alene.

The Board went on to describe what it expected of the Lake District Strategic Plan, which may be summarized as a series of goals as follows: 1.

Project an air of confidence in Downtown, Midtown and Northwest Boulevard. 2. Provide a vision for what each of the three districts could become. 3. Create a plan that is implementation oriented. 4. Provide guidance on what property LCDC should acquire, and why. 5. Reconcile zoning with intended uses to help attract development investment. 6. Be careful to protect established residential communities. 7. Develop a long-term vision for mass transit, anticipating an eventual need for it. 8. Build on the Civic Center that is emerging at the east end of McEuen Park. 9. Give emphasis to the importance of an infrastructure of civic and cultural facilities. 10. Respond to the growing demand for a diversity of housing choices close to Downtown. 21

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Goals and Objectives


The instructions emphasized implementation, drawing on the wealth of planning that had gone before. Three urban renewal areas had been defined, and the purpose was to demonstrate how goals for the community could be translated into specific actions within each of these areas. Could strategic investments precipitate a series of beneficial changes? How could those strategic moves be identified, and how could several agendas be moved forward at once without massive investments? Each district displays quite different characteristics, all of which must be respected. The plan must begin by recognizing what assets exist in each district, and identify realistic expectations for the future. Consequently, the consultant team created an inventory in a series of framework plans, then projected what is there now into what could realistically be there in the future, outlining a vision for each district. Implementation of that vision will, in each case, be achieved through a great many projects, large and small. Some key projects to begin the transformation are described towards the end of the document.

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Goals and Objectives

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VISION A vision for the future in each of the three districts of Downtown, Midtown, and Northwest Boulevard is based on more than just what can happen within their boundaries. Each district must contribute supporting elements of a vision for the entire Coeur d’Alene community. As projects are defined and implemented on specific sites in each district, we must always return to the question – does this project support the vision for Coeur d’Alene? Coeur d’Alene is a city of unparalleled beauty that is on par with a handful of sought-after communities in the country and the world. Lake Coeur d’Alene and the Spokane River settings combined with an attractive and walkable downtown and a world-class resort make Coeur d’Alene more than just a bedroom community to Spokane. The three districts must reinforce these endowments to allow nothing but the highest quality environment to be built. This implies a certain amount of selectivity – not every project will reinforce the world-class potential and spectacular natural beauty of Coeur d’Alene. The community should accept nothing less than quality and should reject ideas and projects that don’t build upon its assets and strengthen its image. The futures of each of the three districts of Downtown, Midtown and Northwest Boulevard are connected, yet differ in some respects. All benefit from: § § § § § §

Proximity to the lake, parks and other recreational assets; Mature neighborhoods with relatively inexpensive housing; Growing influence of higher education; An attractive main street – Sherman Avenue; Diverse development opportunities; Civic champions in the community.

Coeur d’Alene’s transition from a resource economy based in mining and timber to one based in tourism and other, as yet undefined, activities is only just beginning. The expected growth of higher education will bring new jobs and investment into the community. Employers in search of an educated workforce will find Coeur d’Alene an increasingly attractive place to locate, bringing jobs and economic growth. Retirees and second-home buyers will continue to discover the region’s comfortable lifestyle. Visions for the three districts must build on Coeur d’Alene’s existing assets to create sustained affluence on improved livability.

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DOWNTOWN Downtown Coeur d’Alene can strengthen its identity with new civic amenities: library, city hall, performing arts center, conference center, museums, galleries, an arts cinema. These would be closely associated with well-appointed parks and public spaces, and would be served by sufficient and inconspicuous parking. There would be more jobs downtown, as older buildings are remodeled or replaced to accommodate a growing number of business. Existing cafes and restaurants would benefit from increased trade, further enlivening the streets. Mid-priced and high-end condominiums would proliferate downtown, taking advantages of lake and park views, and of proximity to year-round employment, cultural, entertainment and retail facilities. These amenities would also support nearby apartments, townhouses, lofts, and other ownership and rental housing types for all income levels. Downtown retail would become stronger as a result of the new residents and jobs. Improvements would have a visible effect on Sherman Avenue, extending the vital part of the street east to meet the historic Sherman neighborhood. To the west, active retail would wrap around the corner onto Northwest Boulevard. Front and Lakeside avenues would gain some retail and cultural investment too, with employment and housing filling available lots on these streets and on western parts of Coeur d’Alene and Indiana avenues.

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Planning Downtown

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MIDTOWN Midtown comprises three distinct parts and draws strength from three distinct sources: a flourishing Downtown, a growing Education Corridor to the west, and new employment opportunities to the north. Midtown is filled with potential, but lacks an incoming flow of residents and investment to realize that potential. Through a mix of housing types, a Midtown of the future would accommodate an influx of students, faculty and administrators from the Education Corridor, downtown professionals and service workers, and seniors who prefer a house to a condominium yet want to be within walking distance of most services. Renovation of existing housing stock would meet some needs, while infill development of low- and mid-priced apartments would satisfy the more transient element. New residents would support the growth of commercial nodes at intersections along 4th Street, creating a lively neighborhood culture. Infill development between the retail nodes would make the street whole again, served by two-way traffic on 3rd and 4th streets south of Harrison with generous on-street parking. North of Harrison Avenue, a similar pattern would be evident. However, establishment of a major new employment center on the former auto sales lots would provide the infusion of jobs that would reinvigorate both Midtown and the greater community. Added to this would be senior housing within a few blocks of the hospital, and a proliferation of medical offices and other hospital-related businesses.

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Planning Midtown


NORTHWEST BOULEVARD Opportunities and challenges are more diverse along Northwest Boulevard than in either Downtown or Midtown. Expansion of the Education Corridor, the eventual build-out of Riverstone, vacation of railroad rights-of-way, development of vacant land both north and south of the I-90 interchange, and the development potential of the Premix property are some of the factors affecting the future of the corridor. Northwest Boulevard is largely disconnected from adjacent neighborhoods. There is no neighborhood at all north of the Fort Grounds although one is planned within the Riverstone project. Grade differences and railroad tracks limit access to the riverfront to a few key intersections. Capitalizing upon today’s opportunities, a Northwest Boulevard of the future would be transformed by new and improved uses along its entire length from Downtown to north of I-90. At the south end, Downtown would seamlessly merge into Northwest Boulevard with commercial infill development and museums near City Park. To the north and west, the civic campus of County and State agencies would include new buildings on many of its parking lots, increasing year-round employment. Further north, a ‘university village’ of student housing, retail and recreational facilities would serve as an entrance to the Education Corridor from River Avenue. Expanding this future vision, Riverstone would be completed with a mix of housing, retail, employment and entertainment, and the east side of the boulevard would respond with a mix of infill and redevelopment projects. North of Hubbard Avenue, a new campus of R&D companies spawned by the Education Corridor would have emerged. Part of the Premix property would be under redevelopment for a new high tech company headquarters. Other ‘new technology’ employers would have secured many of the remaining parcels, which will be served by an extension of the Spokane light rail line. An extension of the line to Downtown would be under construction.

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Planning

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FRAMEWORK PLANS Framework Plans are so named because they disaggregate complex environments into a number of single topic plans. These enable one to focus on one aspect of the urban environment at a time, recognizing both its successes and its short-comings. Gaps in a system of circulation or greenery become immediately apparent, and necessary remediation becomes obvious. The framework plans that follow in some cases show what is there now (Existing Land Use, for example), and sometimes also show what remediation is suggested (as in the case of Existing and Proposed Landscape). Re-aggregation of the framework plans builds up an instructive image of how a fully functioning urban environment might appear.

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Framework Plans Context

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CONTEXT The context of Coeur d’Alene in the region, and of the three districts within Coeur d’Alene frame the uses and activities that can be expected to succeed here. It is important that the vision for each district should be practical and achievable. Opportunities close to a freeway intersection are clearly very different from those in an old residential neighborhood. The context framework plan gives this perspective, looking outward from each district to identify external influences on its future performance. Downtown encompasses the existing downtown central business district. Midtown extends from Foster Avenue to Harrison Avenue north of Downtown. Northwest Boulevard extends from the I-90 area to Garden Avenue and from the ridge to the river. On the east side NW Boulevard is built against the ridge. On the west side the view opens up to the river and lake. The district has five distinct subareas, including I-90; Highway 95 North; Highway 95 South; Riverstone; and the Education Corridor. Riverstone has been strategically planned and therefore not addressed in this plan. The Education Corridor is envisioned as a campus with groupings of cultural and civic buildings in a park setting. There may also be a small “university village”, although downtown will be the primary location for related retail and services. This plan recommends that a separate sub-area plan be prepared for the Education Corridor to fully define its special needs and potential.

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Context


proposed open space

open space boulevard campus parkway commercial/mixed use pedestrian street residential pedestrian street pedestrian / bicycle path education corridor campus

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Civic Space Downtown

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CIVIC SPACE The Civic Space Framework Plan creates a network of well-developed pedestrian environments that contribute to the district’s public realm. This network includes existing and proposed open spaces, boulevards, parkways, pedestrian streets, intersection improvements, and pedestrian/bicycle paths. When fully implemented, this network will integrate the district into the larger downtown context and maximize the potential for a compact, lively, pedestrian-oriented downtown. The Civic Space Framework Plan includes the following recommendations: Open Space Enhance quality of waterfront open spaces for civic uses • Current plans for improvement of McEuen Field do not address its long term potential. • Redesign and expand City Park and Memorial Field. o Expand park character and public access along the river and Northwest Boulevard. o Relocate the park entry at Mullan Road to Garden Avenue to increase the size and continuity of City Park and its frontage on Northwest Boulevard. o Enhance the Ft. Sherman historical sites and features o Accommodate new civic and cultural uses (new Museum, Human Rights Center, etc.). o Maintain and enhance views to lake and river. o Preserve and enhance Fort Grounds neighborhood. o Integrate with Education Corridor development.

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Civic Space


Boulevards • Provide boulevard landscaping on Northwest Boulevard and Ramsey Road. • Streetscape improvements to include regularly space street trees, surface landscaping, street lighting and unique crosswalk paving. • Landscape major entries (Ramsey Park, Riverstone, Education Corridor, City Park). • Underground utilities. Campus Parkways • Redevelop the streets within the Education Corridor and existing college campus as campus parkways. • Retain and enhance the quality of residential streets within the Fort Grounds neighborhood. • Develop a comprehensive interpretive and directional signage program within the campus. • Develop and define entry points along Northwest Boulevard (special landscaping, sidewalk treatments and gateway features). Pedestrian streets • Develop Pedestrian Streets as “green streets” within selected midtown and downtown areas that include pedestrian scale lighting, special sidewalk paving, landscaping, street trees. Pedestrian Streets encourage a mix of transportation modes (pedestrians, bicycles, automobiles, service vehicles and future transit). • Encourage trips on foot in areas of the city where civic, retail, and office uses are concentrated. • Develop 4th Street as a Pedestrian Street in Midtown. Change 3rd and 4th streets to two-way traffic south of Harrison Avenue to encourage pedestrian use and neighborhood district identity. • Capitalize on flat terrain and waterfront views. • Develop Garden Avenue as a Pedestrian Street and east/west, cross-town connection between the Education Corridor and neighborhoods to the east. Invest in housing development and rehabilitation along this corridor. 32

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Civic Space Midtown

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Intersection improvements • Improve key pedestrian crossings with signalization, special sidewalk and crosswalk paving, and landscaping. Pedestrian and bicycle paths • Enhance pedestrian and bicycle paths. • Develop connections where gaps occur in the pathway system. • Develop a continuous pathway along the lake and riverfront, when and where feasible. Bicycle routes • Extend the bicycle circulation network by developing bicycle routes when there is insufficient right-of-way for bicycle paths. • Create an east-west bicycle route on Garden Avenue linking the Education Corridor with neighborhoods to the east. • Link the Government Way bicycle path with a bicycle route connecting to Garden Avenue.

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frontage currently not in conformance major retail (100% frontage) retail linkage (50% retail frontage) retail/service (50% retail/service frontage) ped-oriented mixed-use (ped-oriented frontages encouraged auto-oriented commercial government / institutional

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Framework Plans Frontage Downtown

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FRONTAGE The frontages of buildings along urban streets are the strongest determinants of the character and quality of a district. Continuous storefronts along Sherman Avenue create an interesting and attractive walking environment. Blank walls and open parking lots have the opposite effect, discouraging walkers. Only a limited number of block fronts can be lined with retail, but other uses can present friendly and animated frontages to the street. An objective illustrated by the Frontage Framework Plan is to link different land uses throughout the district together so that street environments of consistently attractive quality yet varying character are created. At present, there are numerous discontinuities in block frontages that give the district a scattered or incomplete feeling. Along 4th Street in Midtown, many buildings have deteriorated or been cleared, creating a prevailing air of dereliction. However, there are some new buildings, and many more that could be renovated. A case could be made for focusing retail activity at a few nodes along 4th, and consolidating housing on other stretches. History has left the remains of a mid-century shopping strip that thrived before the advent of out-of-town shopping centers and big box retailers. The existing frontage must be renovated and replaced to provide a balance of activities that will support a healthy community.

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Framework Plans

Midtown Frontage


frontage currently not in conformance major retail (100% frontage) retail linkage (50% retail frontage) retail/service (50% retail/service frontage) ped-oriented mixed-use (ped-oriented frontages encouraged auto-oriented commercial government / institutional residential open space

36 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Frontage Northwest Boulevard South

500’

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April 2003


In Northwest Boulevard auto-oriented commercial frontages are recommended north of Highway 95. South of Highway 95, a campus, park-like frontage is recommended on the west side of Northwest Boulevard and primarily civic and residential frontages on the east side.

37 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Northwest Boulevard North Frontage


single family dwelling duplex multi-family dwelling mobile homes commercial civic manufacturing vacant

38 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing Landuse Downtown

300’

600’

April 2003


EXISTING LANDUSE Existing land uses represent expectations and investments made by the owners of each lot. There may be reasons to change uses on some lots, but the prevailing pattern will largely dictate the future character of a district. Changes in land use must therefore be specific and strategic: proposed to achieve a systemic improvement in the community.

39 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing Landuse Midtown


single family dwelling duplex multi-family dwelling mobile homes commercial civic manufacturing vacant

40 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing Landuse Northwest Boulevard South

500’

1000’

April 2003


41 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing Landuse Northwest Boulevard North


predominant landuses open space city and county government downtown mixed-use district retail and service center neighborhood center mixed-use/residential residential

42

uptown mixed use 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Preferred Landuse Downtown

300’

600’

April 2003


PREFERRED LANDUSE This plan proposes to build on existing assets in each of the three districts, so no wholesale change in land uses is proposed. However, clearer definition in the character of sub-districts is necessary to strengthen communities, and to prevent further erosion of healthy neighborhoods by conversion to inappropriate uses. The Preferred Land Use framework plan generalizes uses that will predominate in each sub-district. Clearer identity and certainty over the nature of future neighbors is necessary to economic stability. An important objective is to encourage reinvestment in the residential neighborhoods that border Downtown and Midtown, and to do this, the threat of displacement by nonresidential uses must be removed. There are other important initiatives to be undertaken before this objective will be accomplished, but from a land use standpoint, certainty about what uses will be supported, and where, is important. Non-conforming uses will continue, and in many cases they can enrich a community, whether it is predominantly residential or commercial. A mix of uses creates vitality, and provides for efficiency in trips between destinations; something that cannot be rivaled in most suburban communities. In Midtown, changing times have left an incoherent mixture of uses and vacant lots strewn along 4th Street. The Preferred Land Use framework plan suggests that retail and services be focused between Reid and Boise avenues, so that they can reinforce one-another as a local center for the residential neighborhood around it. North of Boise Avenue, retail and services tend to be mostly autooriented, and so serve a larger population. Predominant land uses are shown in each sub-district, and there is no intention to exclude multifamily housing, for example, being built to infill vacant lots in the neighborhood center. The objective is a vital center for a revitalized neighborhood. Land uses are just one indication of how that might be achieved.

43 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Preferred Landuse Midtown


open space city and county government downtown mixed-use district retail and service center neighborhood center mixed-use/residential residential uptown mixed use

44 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Preferred Landuse Northwest Boulevard South

500’

1000’

April 2003


In Northwest Boulevard land uses are distinct to the sub-areas. The I-90 sub-area is a mix of multi-family residential and auto-oriented commercial. The planned expansion of Ramsey Park will enhance the areas attraction for multi-family development. A boulevard streetscape on Ramsey Road will help tie development to the NW Boulevard corridor to the south. The Highway 95 North sub-district is an auto-oriented commercial district. The Highway 95 South sub-district is more pedestrian-oriented than the area north. Multifamily residential and the County campus on the east and the Education Corridor and related civic and cultural uses on the west will add vitality to this area.

45 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Preferred Landuse Northwest Boulevard North


parcel with land/improvement ratio > 1.5

46 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Development Opportunities Downtown

300’

600’

April 2003


DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES The Development Opportunities Framework Plan identifies land parcels where redevelopment is encouraged (land/improvement ratio greater than 1.5). Findings: • • •

Downtown and Midtown are dominated by many blocks with buildings of moderate to low investment Downtown and Midtown are dominated by blocks with substantial surface parking Concentrations of these parcels occur Downtown on Front, Lakeside, Coeur d’Alene, Indiana and Garden avenues and on 4th Street in Midtown.

As referenced in the Implementation Strategy of this report, these parcels represent key opportunity areas for redevelopment. In most cases, these opportunities may be defined as development “corridors” (e.g., Garden Avenue, Lakeside Avenue, and 4th Street in Midtown). Development of both sides of the corridor should be considered as well as the relationship between corridors and the connections to adjoining neighborhoods.

47 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Development Opportunities Midtown


parcel with land/improvement ratio > 1.5

48 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Development Opportunities Northwest Boulevard South

500’

1000’

April 2003


In the Northwest Boulevard district many parcels fit the criterion of land/ improvement ratio greater than 1.5. Development opportunities are well recognized in this district, including: I-90, Riverstone, Highway 95-South and the Education Corridor. In addition, there is considerable redevelopment opportunity on the west side of Northwest Boulevard in the Highway 95North sub-area where existing properties are under utilized and in poor condition.

49 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Development Opportunities Northwest Boulevard North


major signage secondary signage minor signage proposed public structured parking public parking Lakeside Avenue on-street parking other parking (on street parking to be maximized)

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surface parking to be redeveloped no curb parking

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Parking Downtown

0

300’

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April 2003


EXISTING

AND

PROPOSED PARKING

The Parking Framework Plan proposes an expanded system of public and private parking. The following approach is recommended Downtown: • Concentrate public and private parking and access on Lakeside Avenue • Maintain public parking at McEuen Field and City Park • Create a parking signage and wayfinding program encouraging parking within the Lakeside Avenue corridor • Maintain and maximize the efficiency of curb parking and access o Provide short-term parking for business customers and visitors o Encourage restaurant valet parking • In the mid-term, build a garage for public parking on Lakeside Avenue at a central location Downtown. Locate the vehicular entrance mid-block on Lakeside Avenue to avoid conflicts with turning movements and queues at intersections. Provide retail at street level of the garage to maintain pedestrianoriented activity. Where feasible, locate stair and elevator cores at the street edge for increased visibility. Provide a high degree of transparency in elevator hoistways and cabs. Adhere to safety-in-design guidelines for parking structures. Maintain good, uniform lighting, and minimize opportunities for personal concealment. Encourage canopies on storefronts to provide weather protection. Design parking garage with appropriate wall material; window opening scale, proportion and pattern. Provide the same quality of human scale, transparency, frontage, and weather protection as required of other buildings at street level. Encourage mid-block parking structures, where feasible, that minimize garage frontage and allow commercial, civic and residential buildings to occupy the corner lots. The location of a public garage should respond to the following goals: o Serve a variety of development with different peak hour demands, making them more cost-effective by extending their hours of use o Minimize walking distance for customers • Encourage public and private lots and garages to participate in programs that offer discount parking rates for special events and off-season promotions

0

300’

April 2003

600’

In Midtown: • Maintain curb parking on both sides of 4th Street and on all cross streets • Restrict parking lot or garage frontages on 4th Street in proposed neighborhood center mixed-use district • Provide mid-block pedestrian paths to increase pedestrian access on long blocks

51

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Parking Midtown


major signage secondary signage minor signage proposed public structured parking public parking Lakeside Avenue on-street parking other parking (on street parking to be maximized) surface parking to be redeveloped no curb parking

52 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Parking Northwest Boulevard South

500’

1000’

April 2003


In the Northwest Boulevard district the majority of parking is in landscaped off-street lots. This pattern should continue. Curb parking should not be provided on Ramsey Road and Northwest Boulevard to maintain a smooth flow of traffic into the city.

53 0

April 2003

500’

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Parking Northwest Boulevard North


proposed street trees

existing street trees

proposed landscape median

existing landscape median

54 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Landscape Downtown

300’

600’

April 2003


EXISTING

AND

PROPOSED LANDSCAPE

The Landscape Framework Plan proposes improvements in tree cover and landscape open space to enhance the quality of the pedestrian environment. Under this plan, gaps in the existing pattern of street tree within Downtown and Midtown will be filled to provide continuity on street tree corridors. Continuous tree plantings along streets will mitigate urban heat island effects by shading paved areas, create a pleasant pedestrian experience and improve the appearance of Downtown and Midtown. Specific street tree recommendation include: • Select trees from list of City-approved tree species, for their appropriate size, shape, density, transparency of canopy, surface root habits, fall color, and tolerance to drought and urban conditions. Also consider the benefits of visual continuity and diversity in each location. • Provide irrigation systems for all street trees. Maintain irrigation systems over a normal healthy tree life. • Improve underground root space conditions for trees planted in paving. Incorporate new technologies such as structural soil, airentrained structural soil, tree trenches, aeration and hydration vents and other designs to increase street tree health and longevity. Other landscape recommendations include: • Provide special landscape features at Downtown entry points at each end of Sherman Avenue (1st Street and 8th Street) • Provide seasonal color in flower plantings in planter pots at selected Downtown and Midtown locations. Provide a maintenance program for planter pots that ensures attractive appearance through the growing season. • Enhance the landscape quality of the downtown civic and recreational parks (McEuen Field, City Park, and Tubbs Hill). These improvements include enhanced trails and interpretive graphics, gardens and seasonal plantings, shade trees, seating, and areas for special features and events. 55 0

April 2003

300’

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Landscape Midtown


proposed street trees

existing street trees

proposed landscape median

existing landscape median

56 0

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Street Trees Northwest Boulevard South

500’

1000’

April 2003


Landscape recommendations in Northwest Boulevard include: Provide a planted median and regularly spaced street trees at the back of the sidewalk to reinforce the Boulevard character and spatial enclosure of Northwest Boulevard and Ramsey Road.

57 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Existing and Proposed Landscape Northwest Boulevard North


pedestrian/bicycle path campus parkway boulevard commercial/mixed-use pedestrian street residential pedestrian corridor controlled crossing

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Pedestrian Improvements Downtown

300’

600’

April 2003


PEDESTRIAN IMPROVEMENTS To enhance the pedestrian environment, special street classifications are recommended. These are defined as: Pedestrian Street-Residential Pedestrian Streets proposed in residential areas are intended to preserve the character and quality of established residential areas in the city. These neighborhoods are defined by mature street trees, a 5 foot sidewalk, wide planting strips and low walls or fences along the property line. Within a 60 foot street right-of-way, the following functional areas should be provided. Sidewalks should be 5-6 1⁄2 foot width (5 foot minimum and 6 1⁄2 foot maximum) with 5 1⁄2 foot planting strips (including a 6” curb) and regularly spaced street trees. The roadway includes two 10 1⁄2 foot vehicular lanes and two 7 1⁄2 foot curb parking areas. Areas at the base of street trees are defined by metal edging to allow for seasonal planting and ground covers that create variety and an opportunity for individual expression by homeowners. Low walls or fences are encouraged at the property line to delineate residential lots and add pedestrian interest. A 1 1⁄2 foot wide area between the fence or wall and a 5 foot wide sidewalk may be used for seasonal plantings or the sidewalk may be widen to 6 1⁄2 foot and abut the fence or wall. Pedestrian Street-Commercial/Mixed Use Pedestrian Streets proposed in commercial/mixed-use areas are intended to provide for pedestrian activities to “spill out” onto the sidewalk. These uses might include sidewalk cafes, planting tubs, “A” frame signs and other pedestrian amenities. Pedestrian-scaled lighting will add pedestrian interest. The historic fixtures now used downtown or similar fixture should be used. Sidewalk bulbs should be used at intersections to reduce pedestrian crossing distances. These bulbs will create special areas for landscaping and street trees that encourage pedestrian use. 0

April 2003

300’

600’

Within a 60 foot street right-of-way, the following functional areas should be provided. Sidewalks should be 10 1⁄2 foot width. The roadway should include two 12 foot vehicular lanes and two 7 1⁄2 foot curb parking areas. The 10 1⁄2 foot sidewalk width is too narrow for street trees. However, street trees may be planted in the sidewalk bulbs.

59

Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Pedestrian Improvements Midtown


Within a 70 foot street right-of-way, the following functional areas should be provided. Sidewalks should be 15 1⁄2 foot width with regularly spaced street trees. The roadway should include two 12 foot vehicular lanes and two 7 1⁄2 foot curb parking areas. Landscaping under street trees will create variety and an opportunity for individual expression by shop owners. In Downtown controlled crossings and pedestrian improvements, such as special crosswalk paving and pedestrian signals, are recommended at intersections on Sherman Avenue, Front Avenue, 4th Street and Northwest Boulevard. Crosswalk improvements should also be made on Garden Avenue at 4th Street and Government Way. pedestrian/bicycle path

On Northwest Boulevard/Ramsey Road controlled crossings and pedestrian improvements, similar to those at Lakewood Drive, are recommended at Marie Avenue, Lee Ranch Drive, Appleway Avenue, Ironwood Drive, Lakewood Drive (improved), LaCrosse Avenue, Hubbard Avenue, Lincoln Way, Garden Avenue, and Mullan Road. Pedestrian and bicycle connections to the river should provided at LaCrosse and within the Education Corridor.

pedestrian/bicycle path campus parkway boulevard commercial/mixed-use pedestrian street residential pedestrian corridor

60 500’

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Boulevard Northwest Boulevard and a portion of Ramsey Road are defined as Boulevards. Boulevards are intended to welcome visitors to the city. Street trees at the back edge of the sidewalk and seasonally planted central median provides a distinctive character. Gateways, such as that developed at Riverstone are envisioned at major entries to the Education Corridor. Within an 80 foot street right-of-way, the following functional areas should be provided. Sidewalks should be 10 1⁄2 foot width with regularly spaced street trees at the back of the walk in 4 x 12 foot planting areas. Four, 12 foot wide traffic lanes (two lanes in each direction) separated by an 11 foot wide landscaped median should be provided. The median may become a left turn pocket at intersections. No curb parking should be provided to smooth the flow of traffic and emphasis the processional quality of entering the city.

controlled crossing

0

In Midtown, special crosswalk paving should be used on 4th Street at Boise, Montana, Roosevelt and Reid avenues.

Pedestrian Improvements Northwest Boulevard South

April 2003


Campus Parkway Campus Parkways are recommended for the Education Corridor and the peninsula fronting the river and lake west of Northwest Boulevard. Except for the Fort Grounds neighborhood, the peninsula is envisioned as a campus with civic and cultural uses. The Campus Parkway provides curb parking and generous landscaping and pedestrian walkways. Pedestrian-scaled lighting and wide planting areas create a park-like setting. Within a 70 foot street right-of-way, the following functional areas should be provided. Sidewalks should be 10 foot width separated from the curb by a 7 1⁄2 foot grass planting strip with regularly spaced street trees. The roadway should provide two 7 1⁄2 foot curb parking areas and two 10 foot vehicular lanes.

61 0

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Framework Plans

Pedestrian Improvements Northwest Boulevard North


6’-6”

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Pedestrian Street - Residential

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Pedestrian Street - Commercial Mixed-use

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NW Boulevard

62

10’

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7’-6”’

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70’

Campus Parkway

Lake District Strategic Plan

Vision

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


REVITALIZATION STRATEGY

Revitalization Strategy 1. Make a Great Plan 2. Many Different Projects and Actions 3. Many Different Stakeholders 4. Committed Ongoing City and Private Sector Leadership

Without a strategy for implementation, the vision for the revitalization of three districts is just that, a vision. The success of any plan cannot be measured simply by its adoption by a city council or by the quality of its physical design. Success is measured by actual programs and built projects that combine to change the landscape in ways that conform to the vision. Those changes can only be seen over time – the plans for Downtown, Midtown, and Northwest Boulevard are just the beginning of the process; not the end. Therefore, it is critical that a strategy to lay the groundwork and carry out the vision – an Implementation Strategy – be incorporated into the strategic plan. Successful implementation involves several key components. It requires committed ongoing leadership and organization as well as a communications program that broadcasts accomplishments. Success is much more likely when there are supportive government structures and policies in place and a supportive media. The following eight components should be used to guide implementation of urban revitalization in Coeur d’Alene:

5. Performance Standards

1. MAKE

6. Communications and Marketing

The three district plans must capture the hearts and minds, and therefore the full enthusiasm, of the community. The plans for Coeur d’Alene will recognize a large number of projects — potential and existing, involve numerous stakeholders, and mobilize them with a motivating vision that captures their imagination.

7. Supportive Government 8. Ongoing Review

A

GREAT PLAN

Great plans: § § §

Go far beyond patching problems with quick-fix solutions or reacting to specific issues; Present strong enough visions to motivate and enliven people to take action; Address long-term possibilities regardless of short-term constraints.

Developing the three district plans includes building the “human infrastructure” for a vision-making process to continue through implementation. The plans define concrete solutions to specific revitalization challenges and set a course for attracting new investment.

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


2. MANY DIFFERENT PROJECTS

AND

ACTIONS

To keep the plans and visions on track, always maintain a variety and number of projects and actions. It is unlikely that a single big project will “save the day.” Rather, through a series of small and mid-size actions, programs, and projects, the public and private sectors working together will achieve the visions of the three district plans. Having many, different projects in the three districts and elsewhere in the city will enable a diversity of development products, keeping projects small and facilitating involvement from the local financial and development community. The definition of what constitutes a project is broad — regulatory policy, code revisions, development projects, and educational programs are all projects: § § § § § § § § § § § § §

Planning projects – physical plans, specific plans, illustrative plans; Policy development, regulations, and design guidelines; Public physical projects – parks, recreation, trails, open space, river and lake front access; Waterfront enhancement – cleanup, environmental restoration, reclamation; Public infrastructure improvements – utilities, access, street lighting, furniture; Private sector housing development; Private sector retail commercial & lodging development; Private sector office and employment development; Public sector cultural facility development; Economic development programs; Events – music and arts festivals; Local lending pools for revitalization; Application of varied financial tools for public-private partnerships.

The list of projects underway in each district should never drop below twentyfive. That way, the success of the district doesn’t hinge on any single project. If one should fail or not happen, there will be plenty of other projects to sustain the momentum.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


3. MANY DIFFERENT STAKEHOLDERS Implementation requires collaboration and support among stakeholders. A stakeholder is any individual or organization with an interest in the three district’s outcomes. This includes a wide group of individuals, companies, and public and private organizations, as well as government bodies at all levels – everyone from the city, county, and state to large local employers to North Idaho College and other educational institutions. The key to successful implementation will be creating mechanisms for marrying the numerous stakeholders – current and potential – with numerous projects – existing and proposed. § § § §

Stakeholders provide a broad base of involvement and promote project implementation; Stakeholders form the basis of political support for implementation of the strategy; A wide stakeholder base leads to a diversity of ideas, projects, and solutions; People are often the biggest barriers to success of the plan – help them be part of the solution.

4. COMMITTED ONGOING CITY LEADERSHIP

AND

PRIVATE SECTOR

The plan will have many advocates, but ongoing, committed leaders who see the plan through are essential to its success. Seek out leaders who: § § § §

Desire success for the entire community; Are respected by the community; Have the ability to motivate and organize stakeholders; and Promote and communicate the vision of the plan.

Early in the process, a “champion” should be designated within the City or LCDC. Implementation of the plan will involve multiple city agencies; a champion can help motivate and coordinate these agencies as well as quickly resolve issues and act as a liaison to policy makers. From the private sector, an individual, a committee, or an umbrella organization that represents a broad base of special interests should work in partnership with the City to further the three districts plans. 65

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


5. PERFORMANCE STANDARDS Clear and consistent guidelines are necessary to communicate the visions for Coeur d’Alene. Plans are inherently forward-looking and are more likely to succeed if they offer dynamic and flexible standards that can easily respond to new opportunities as they arise. Successful performance standards provide an essential set of tools to facilitate implementation – without being overly prescriptive. Performance standards may include streetscape guidelines, zoning code revisions, building code amendments, strategic plan goals, and existing planning standards. Regardless of the existing pattern, it is important for the performance standards to be examined to identify whether they encourage implementation. Performance standards should: § § § § §

Include clear and consistent guidelines that communicate the vision of the plan; Encourage that which is desired and strongly discourage that which is not wanted; Offer dynamic and flexible guides – pragmatic standards for change; Allow for the vision to be implemented over a period of time; and Back up those standards with enforcement, incentives and resources for implementation.

66

Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


6. COMMUNICATION

AND

MARKETING

A strategic communications and marketing plan brings pride with participation and creates an attractive community for residents and businesses. Achieving the vision of Coeur d’Alene as a world-class destination to live, work, and play requires getting the word out. With numerous projects underway at the same time, there will be many successes to broadcast. This increases prospects for further successes because investors, developers, and lenders seek out environments with market opportunity. In other words, success breeds success. § § §

Both the organization and the leadership must communicate successful implementation; Marketing means making news out of the continuing projects; and Communication of projects is essential at all levels: among implementing agencies, between the numerous stakeholders, and among the greater Coeur d’Alene community.

LCDC, the City, and community stakeholders should formalize communication networks so that they become regularly filled with local implementation success stories. Communication may take place via a number of formats: § § § § § § §

Local media – newspaper, TV, radio; Newsletters; Websites; Public meetings; Brochures and plans; Signage; and Internal and external e-mail networks.

The committed leadership should formalize communication networks so that they become regularly filled with local implementation success stories. Communication may take place via the same range of media cited above.

67

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


7. SUPPORTIVE GOVERNMENT Government is an essential partner, albeit one that is often misunderstood by the private sector. After all, there are some things only government can do. As marketers and developers, LCDC and the City have the responsibility and the authority to remove barriers to implementation. For instance, the City can change outdated and inappropriate codes and LCDC can offer public financing or development bonuses to encourage private investment. These efforts require leadership and innovation on the part of government. To be successful, government must look beyond traditional approaches to problem solving. It must think more like an implementer and facilitator and less like a regulator. Actions that government may take include: § § § § §

Address financial barriers by developing funding strategies that capture local, state and federal dollars for matching private investment; Develop good communication between governments and community leadership; Prioritize key strategic actions LCDC will take to support effective implementation; Provide support for achieving standards – consultation with property owners or potential developers, code enforcement and assistance; and Assess the internal structure to review its practices and identify and change policies in a reasonable time frame so that private sector investors are encouraged to take an active role in implementation.

8. ONGOING REVIEW Most plans benefit from the opportunity to stop and examine progress so that the means are consistent with the goals. An ongoing review process will evaluate policies and the degree to which the plan is being successfully implemented. In order to remain effective: § §

68

Dynamic plans require ongoing review that elicits responses to changing conditions; and All aspects must be evaluated – the plan, the projects, and communications – and periodic plan adjustments must be made when necessary.

As the plan evolves and the organization changes, the need for internal and external review will become increasingly important. Setting a date and responsibility for review during the first year and annual review thereafter is appropriate and necessary for Coeur d’Alene.

Lake District Strategic Plan

Revitalization Strategy Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


APPLYING

THE

STRATEGY

IN

COEUR

D’ALENE

Applying the implementation strategy to the Downtown, Midtown, and Northwest Boulevard districts begins by acknowledging that each district has its own set of challenges and opportunities. With a focus on implementation, the heart of revitalization lies in the numerous projects that will realize the vision. In order to implement projects, the strategy elements must, of course, be aligned. The discussion of each district begins with a vision for the future – similar to the overall vision for Coeur d’Alene outlined earlier, but with more detail and specificity for each district. Each vision is implemented through a series of “Big Ideas.” A Big Idea is project concept that can be broken down into multiple smaller elements. The following strategy describes the Big Ideas and smaller project for each district, and is prioritized by immediate actions followed by longer-term initiatives. The prioritization reflects both the expertise of the consultant team and their experience in preparing similar strategies in other cities as well as through discussions with the LCDC board about what is desired and feasible in Coeur d’Alene. Projects priorities reflect a logical succession of actions so that the early actions lay the groundwork for future projects. More importantly, the priorities represent the types of projects and actions that will have the greatest positive impact on the revitalization of each district. While the list of projects is long, it is important that adequate attention be given to each action item so that projects have a fair chance of success and momentum is sustained. While the Big Ideas are organized within the three districts here, many project apply to more than one or all three districts. In those cases, the description of the Big Idea and the list of sub-projects makes note of that. Further, within each district, many of the Big Ideas have overlapping elements.

69

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

District Implementation Strategy

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


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Lake District Strategic Plan

District Implementation Strategy Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


DOWNTOWN CULTURAL CENTER

A Downtown Cultural Center would reinforce Downtown as the heart of Coeur d’Alene – a place where residents and visitors would come to see plays, listen to music, hear lectures, view exhibits, and see movies. The picturesque location along the lake and the concentration of lodging and dining opportunities Downtown make it the best location for cultural and entertainment events. A number of cultural providers are already active in Coeur d’Alene and could be a part of a greater Cultural Center. The Center is unlikely to be a single element consisting of a group of venues in one large complex. Rather, it would be considered a center based on the shared purpose and focus of separate elements spread throughout Downtown and the Northwest Boulevard districts. The core factor is the recognition that cultural providers can benefit by their proximity to other providers and that each district can benefit by the increased visibility and activity provided by patrons. Integral to all of the projects and actions listed below is a true sense of partnership between LCDC and the numerous private organizations that will carry out the actions. To foster these partnerships, LCDC should seek out opportunities to interact with these organizations by attending meetings and sitting on committees.

Immediate Actions § Land acquisition and assembly: LCDC should acquire properties in strategic locations for specific cultural facilities. Likely locations are at the east and west ends of Downtown – near the future library and McEuen Fields at the east and near the North Idaho Museum and City Park at the west end. § Preparation of a detailed feasibility study for an arts center: The specific elements of a cultural center in Coeur d’Alene have not been defined at this point. A detailed feasibility study would assess the potential demand for various uses (theater, cinema, etc.) and would develop a financial plan to guide fundraising and development.

71

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


§

§

§

§

§

§

72

Development of the Human Rights Center: While the HRC is a private initiative, LCDC could play a supporting role in the development through property acquisition or construction financing. When developed, the HRC will attract positive national attention to Coeur d’Alene, which also helps support the vision for Coeur d’Alene as a world-class city. Establishment and expansion of music or arts festivals: Music and arts festivals should be an integral part of Downtown’s cultural focus. These could include both indoor and outdoor events depending upon the time of the year and the location. LCDC should support existing and new efforts to develop cultural events Downtown. Marketing campaigns to promote Downtown cultural activities: LCDC and the City should be partners in any marketing efforts to promote Downtown. These are likely led by private organizations like the chamber, merchants associations, lodging associations, tourism organizations, and others. LCDC support could include both financial assistance as well as participation in the production of literature that touts the success of Downtown and recent projects. Coordination of cultural activities with new library – maximize its impact: The upcoming construction of the new library at the east end of Downtown presents enormous opportunities to create a special sense of place beyond the library itself. In particular, LCDC should work with the library to consider special elements such as a public plaza, gardens, or conference rooms. Pursuit of grants, donations, and other funding sources to support expansion and development of Downtown cultural providers: Many of the projects described above will be initiated by private or nonprofit organizations, but present opportunities for public participation by LCDC. Wherever possible, all parties should seek out grants and other funding sources to leverage local funding. As a public redevelopment agency, LCDC may be familiar with and have access to a number of federal and state resources. LCDC should make sure that it offers its assistance whenever private organizations are putting forward cultural initiatives Downtown. Maintain and strengthen partnerships with cultural organizations: To coordinate its public efforts with private initiatives, LCDC should strengthen existing relationships with local arts and culture organizations and should seek out new partnerships where appropriate. Most projects in this category will be led by private sector organizations with LCDC playing a supporting role, so it is essential that strong partnerships be made to coordinate and guide this assistance.

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


Long Term Actions § Construction of a theater or performing arts center: If a feasibility study determines that a performing arts center makes sense for Downtown Coeur d’Alene, LCDC should be ready to participate in the actual development of the center. Details of the type and scale of assistance would need to be determined after the study is complete. § Development of an outdoor amphitheater along the waterfront: A waterfront amphitheater would help attract summertime music and performance § Construction of an urban plaza(s) in conjunction with new cultural facilities: As cultural venues are built, an important element of each of them should be a public plaza. A plaza helps to reinforce the importance of the site as well as offers a public gathering place before and after events.

A simple, yet appealing outdoor amphitheater.

A large public plaza near cultural and public facilities.

April 2003

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


PARKING

While often unfairly blamed for a downtown’s ills, efficient and accessible parking is nonetheless an important element to a successful downtown. In Coeur d’Alene, parking must be conveniently located in multiple sites throughout Downtown so as to make parking relatively close regardless of where a business is. That said, it is also important to recognize that the role of parking is to support other land uses and should not determine them. Instead, parking should be used as a tool to leverage private investment in housing, office, cultural, or other uses that further the vision for Downtown.

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Immediate Actions § Prepare a detailed parking inventory and demand analysis. First and foremost, LCDC and the City should commission a detailed parking study to understand the parking dynamics Downtown and to find out whether additional capacity is needed at all. If a parking shortage is determined, then additional tasks will be identified, which could include additional land acquisition, construction of surface parking lots or garages, adjustments to municipal parking rates, or the installation of meters. § Establish merchant validation and valet program: A validation program can encourage the use of paid, off-street parking spaces, thereby freeing up onstreet spaces for short term parking. Additionally, a valet parking program would support Downtown’s growing cluster of quality restaurants. Both validation and valet programs could be organized privately or through a publicprivate partnership. § Create public-private partnerships to link new parking capacity to private development. No city should speculatively spend millions of dollars to supply expensive parking. Instead, the City should seek ways to link new capacity to a defined and captive customer base for spaces. LCDC and the City must acknowledge that the inability to provide adequate parking may cause potential employers to locate to other areas or cities that can provide parking at little or no cost even though Downtown’s other amenities are superior. If developers or large employers seek to locate Downtown, LCDC and the City should make efforts to form a public-private partnership to secure existing parking or provide new capacity in order to level the playing field and maintain Downtown’s competitiveness.

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


§

Acquire land where appropriate. While a parking analysis has not been completed, previous studies have identified likely locations for future parking. The Parking Framework plans outline existing and proposed parking areas. LCDC should make efforts to acquire these properties for future parking projects. LCDC and the City have already acquired some properties on the Federal Building block, bounded by Lakeside, Coeur d’Alene, 4th, and 5th Streets. In order to maximize future parking capacity or other redevelopment opportunities, LCDC should continue to pursue additional property acquisitions on this block. In the event that these sites are not needed for parking capacity, LCDC could still use them for other redevelopment opportunities such as housing, retail, or office.

Long Term Actions No long term actions are specified other than continued implementation of the immediate actions described above. A parking garage that melds with the existing architectural language and provides service space on the ground level.

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April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


CIVIC CAMPUS

As the heart of Coeur d’Alene and Kootenai County, Downtown is home to most of the region’s government offices including City Hall, the County Courthouse, the Federal Building, and other government offices. Particularly along the western edge of Downtown, this concentration of public facilities establishes a distinct civic character that can be expanded upon to give the subdistrict a stronger identity. Projects that would reinforce this civic identity include: § § § § §

Consistent urban design features; New government offices; Civic plaza; Signage, civic monument and historical markers; Collaboration with private organizations like the Chamber of Commerce;

Civic buildings like the Federal Building help define the character of downtown.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


DOWNTOWN - MIDTOWN

GARDEN AVENUE

4TH STREET

3RD STREET

URBAN HOUSING

An oasis of renovated housing can reverse the decline of this neighborhood close to downtown.

Often the greatest impact on a struggling district is the addition of new nearby, close in housing. Large destination retailers are unlikely to return to Downtown, and the City cannot pin its hopes on retail leading a revival. Instead, residents will support local-serving retail and will help give each district – Downtown and Midtown in particular – an 18-hour activity window seven days a week. Housing should serve all segments of the community, from high-end condominiums to affordable apartments. Downtown’s amenities should attract residents of all ages, from retirees to students attending North Idaho College and the University of Idaho. Immediate Actions § Land acquisition for future housing sites: Particularly north of Coeur d’Alene Avenue where the housing stock is somewhat deteriorated, there are numerous opportunities for housing development. LCDC should make strategic property acquisitions that are supportive of the concept maps in order to “land bank” housing sites for future projects. These housing opportunity sites could be used for public and private housing development projects that would occur in future years. By owning the land, LCDC can offer housing sites up for redevelopment and can define the type of development that is desired. Further, LCDC can write the land cost down as necessary in order to make a certain project feasible. § Creating a multifamily housing tax abatement program for Downtown (and for Midtown and Northwest Boulevard) to encourage the development of apartments and condominiums: Similar programs have been implemented in cities of all sizes throughout the country. These programs usually grant a developer reduced or eliminated property taxes for a period of time (usually ten years) for the development of multifamily housing in designated areas. As opposed to the low income housing tax credit program (granted by states), tax abatements are locally managed and can apply to all types of housing, regardless of targeted income. They have been successful in facilitating development in city centers and they help overcome the added expense of 77

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


§

§

§

78

building in downtowns (higher land costs, more expensive construction techniques, etc.) LCDC should immediately work with the City to establish an ordinance to allow for a multifamily housing tax abatement program within the LCDC boundaries in Coeur d’Alene. Creating partnerships with the housing authority or other housing provider to develop affordable units Downtown. With a largely seasonal service-oriented workforce Downtown, there will always be a need for affordable housing units close to these typically low paying jobs. LCDC should explore formal and informal partnerships with local housing agencies such as the Idaho Housing and Finance Association to support the development of new affordable housing units in all three districts. Partnering with higher education institutions to locate student housing Downtown: As the Education Corridor initiative gets underway and the campuses in the Northwest Boulevard campuses expand, there will be an increasing need for housing for students and faculty. Due to its close proximity both to the schools and services, Downtown and the close-in neighborhoods will be ideal places for additional housing to serve these populations. LCDC should work closely with both NIC and UI to evaluate the current housing situation and quantify future needs and types. Explore home ownership programs that encourage Downtown living; eg. first time home buyer, energy efficient mortgages, etc.

Long Term Actions § Public-private housing partnerships: Using direct financial assistance or the disposition of LCDC-owned land, LCDC should facilitate additional housing development in the three districts. Each housing opportunity will be unique to its specific location, but likely housing types for the three districts may include: o Live-work town homes: Live-work townhomes are single-family attached homes that combine living and working space into the same structure. Often, this is accomplished by having a streetlevel office or workshop accessible to the sidewalk, with actual living space located upstairs. With the increase of the proportion of people that work from home, this type of housing should be considered after the Downtown housing market has matured. o Senior housing: Downtown has many amenities that would be

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

A three story building with minimal intrusion to the neighborhood but, provides many different housing options.

Housing that provides many different options that are non-intrusive to the existing character of the neighborhood.

April 2003


o

o o

Existing homes along Garden Avenue that illustrate the type of architecture to be used as reference for all new housing and renovations.

desirable for a senior housing development. Mid-rise condominiums: As the housing market matures in Coeur d’Alene, additional ownership projects will be supportable. Mid-rise condominiums are typically medium sized units (800 to 1,400 square feet) in buildings ranging from three to six floors. Apartments over retail: Many Downtown and Midtown buildings have under utilized space above the street-level retail, which could be remodeled into apartments. Mid- and low-rise apartments: Especially with the growth of NIC and UI, there will be an increasing demand for apartments in the three districts. Mid- and low-rise apartment developments can help fill this demand. Due to the relatively low rents in the Coeur d’Alene market, high-rise apartments are not likely to be feasible in the near future.

GARDEN AVENUE HOUSING OPPORTUNITIES

A specific project to implement the urban housing concept in Coeur d’Alene could occur in the blocks just north of the Downtown core. These streets, primarily between Coeur d’Alene and Foster, have many aging residential properties interspersed with vacant lots. Many of these homes show the effects of inadequate maintenance and others have been divided into multiple units. Current prices in this area reflect these conditions. Unlike many urban areas, close-in neighborhoods in Coeur d’Alene are not experiencing an influx of new residents who buy and renovate older homes. This is a potentially untapped market for Coeur d’Alene. By renovating a small concentration of homes on the same block, a critical mass can be reached that will redefine that particular block and will hopefully attract new reinvestment adjacent to it, spreading outward like ripples. With the low home values in this neighborhood, LCDC could inexpensively start this process.

79 Homes that have been renovated and restored in a fashion that is appealing and is consistent with their building era.

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


LCDC should begin this project by identifying three or four homes adjacent to each other that are in need of repairs and renovation. LCDC should then purchase these homes, perform basic upgrades and simple renovations and then resell them to new homeowners. Rather than full renovations, the improvements should focus on basic elements: § § § § § § §

Electrical, plumbing, and HVAC repairs to bring up to modern code and efficiency standards; New interior and exterior paint; New or refinished flooring; Structural repairs; New roofs, if needed; Front porches and repairs; Landscaping.

Having three or four bright, clean, and attractive homes in a row with a unified identity would set a new tone for this area. This could even include giving the project a name (e.g. “Coeur d’Alene Place”) so that people begin to refer to the area by name. Since market prices are extremely low, it is not likely that LCDC would be able to recoup all of the remodeling costs at resale, however the net total investment would likely be small. The costs of remodeling could be offset by a number of ways: § § § § § § § §

Along Garden Avenue there are homes that present opportunities for renovations that could improve perceptions of value in the neighborhood as a whole.

Partner with North Idaho College to have trades classes perform some work; Have the City of Coeur d’Alene waive all permit and inspection fees; Ask local suppliers to contribute or discount building materials; Ask local interest groups to supply volunteer labor; Pre-qualify purchasers with a take out lender; Lobby a local bank or banks to lend at some discount as a demonstration project; Volume discounts by renovating multiple properties simultaneously; Other techniques and strategies.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


Prior to acquisition, LCDC should have thorough inspections of each property to determine the level of improvements required for each. Cosmetic repairs, electrical and plumbing, and minor structural work should not be a concern. However, if there are major structural repairs needed (like a new foundation, for example), the project may not make financial sense due to the high cost of repairs. LOCATIONS

In order to create a sense of place, it is recommended that at least three or four homes adjacent to each other be renovated at the same time. There are a number of places along Garden Avenue and nearby streets that meet this criterion. To explore how such a project could work on Garden Avenue, a sampling of Garden Avenue residential properties was analyzed using an estimated acquisition cost of 120 percent of the county assessed value (adding 20 percent to account for the additional costs of the purchase transaction, potential higher appraisals, and relocation costs of current tenants if they are rentals). While the specific renovations for each house will vary, an average of 40 percent of the home’s value has been used. Housing along Garden Avenue. The house to the right is an example of a structure that could be replaced or expanded to the size of its next door neighbor.

As mentioned above, LCDC should seek out partners to help perform some of the renovation work and defray costs. Once the properties are repaired, they should be put back on the market as owner-occupied housing. Especially for early projects, it is likely that total costs will exceed the price that can be achieved in the marketplace, in which case LCDC must sell the homes at a loss. Since LCDC will receive the sales revenues, the net expense of the program is simply the gap between total costs and the final sales price. The sales proceeds can then return to a revolving fund for further acquisitions. Over time, as more homes are renovated, a market will develop for home ownership in this neighborhood where people will desire to purchase and renovate homes on their own with no public assistance. For this analysis, it is assumed that the renovated houses will be able to achieve a 20 percent price premium over their purchase price (or equivalent, un-renovated homes). Given these assumptions, the acquisition and renovation of each house would cost the following: 81

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


Sample Property

Renovation Costs (50% of purchase price) $35,440

Total costs (purchase + renovation) $124,040

Likely sales price (120% of purchase price) $106,320

Net cost to LCDC

Property 1

Purchase price (120% of assessed value) $88,600

Property 2 Property 3 Property 4 TOTAL

$54,800 $61,800 $78,200 $283,400

$21,920 $24,720 $31,280 $113,360

$76,720 $86,520 $109,480 $396,760

$65,760 $74,160 $93,840 $340,080

$10,960 $12,360 $15,640 $56,680

$17,720

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


DOWNTOWN-NORTHWEST BOULEVARD GARDEN AVENUE CORRIDOR

As shown in the Pedestrian Framework Plan, Garden Avenue is envisioned as a primary physical and visual connector between Downtown and the emerging Education Corridor. A connection across Northwest Boulevard here makes sense because existing streets on both sides of the street line are closely aligned, allowing for a relatively easy connection. Garden Avenue, between 5th Street and Northwest Boulevard will become an enhanced pedestrian corridor with improved streetscape elements, pedestrian amenities, and signage to reflect its new role as a gateway to the Education Corridor. With new and revitalized housing along its blocks (described in the “Urban Housing” section), Garden Avenue will become one of Downtown Coeur d’Alene’s great urban streets. Immediate Actions § Property acquisition: LCDC should pursue the acquisition of specific properties that will be needed for the future Garden Avenue right-of-way. § Streetscape plan: A detailed streetscape plan will need to be created in order to prepare a detailed cost estimate for the proposed improvements along Garden Avenue. LCDC (and appropriate partners like the City and the colleges) should initiate a planning process to design improvements and estimate the costs for the project in order to guide future steps. Long Term Actions § Northwest Boulevard intersection construction: Once the Education Corridor strategic plan is complete, the mill is relocated, and expansion of the campuses is underway, it would be appropriate to begin construction of the Garden Avenue connection and a new intersection at Northwest Boulevard. § Streetscape improvements: Concurrent with the new street connection across Northwest Boulevard, LCDC should begin streetscape improvements along Garden Avenue between Northwest Boulevard and 5th Street. Specific improvements could include wider sidewalks, bulb-outs at intersections, special paving, signage, street trees, benches, and other amenities. 83

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Northwest Boulevard Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


DOWNTOWN-MIDTOWN-NORTHWEST BOULEVARD PA R K S A N D P U B L I C S P A C E S

In urban areas, the public realm defines private development and opportunity. That is, the streets, sidewalks, parks, and other public features create the framework that defines the opportunities for private investment. Moreover, the quality of the public realm sends a strong signal to the community and sets a precedent for the quality of private development. The public elements of each district should reflect Coeur d’Alene’s stature as a jewel of the Northwest. A top-quality public realm will set similar expectations for private development. While the types of individual actions may be similar from district to district, each one must be defined separately since each district, and even sub-districts within each district, will have its own character and identity. Projects and actions include: Immediate Actions § Begin implementation of the Civic and Open Space Framework Plan. These items include many individual recommended actions. Beginning immediately, LCDC should work with the City and other partners to implement each of the recommendations. While many actions may take years to fully implement, the process should begin now, especially when certain uses need to be relocated such as the ball fields. Specific actions could include: o Land acquisition (for additional park space, new ball fields, etc.) o Gateway features o Implementation of the Downtown Public Places Strategic plan o Rest rooms o Park improvements § Development of sidewalk dining programs to encourage activity on the street. Sidewalk dining adds character and interest to the streetscape and is a favored dining option in the warm summer months. Instituting sidewalk dining program is an inexpensive opportunity to create an “early success” Downtown and may only require a code amendment to allow for outdoor dining on sidewalks.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown - Northwest Boulevard Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


Long Term Actions § Refined streetscape character elements for each subdistrict. Each district should eventually have its own defined streetscape character. The recent improvements along Northwest Boulevard have already given it a unique identify and many Downtown sidewalks have been improved with pavers, benches, and planters. Over time, similar projects should be extended throughout the three districts. Potential streetscape elements could include: ornamental lighting, street pavers, flower baskets, and street trees. Each district should have a streetscape plan that identifies specific improvements, common design elements (lighting styles, tree types, furniture styles, etc.), and locations. § Pedestrian improvements: LCDC should develop a streetscape program to implement the pedestrian improvements identified on the Pedestrian Amenities Framework Plans. Improvements could include bulb-outs at intersections, special crosswalk pavers, raised crosswalks. § Traffic calming: In addition to the pedestrian improvements, above, targeted traffic calming measures may also be appropriate and could include new signalized intersections, speed bumps, and narrowing of streets. § Signage: A signage program may include banners, historical markers, wayfinding signs, and other sign types. LCDC should support signage efforts that send a positive signal about each district and support the vision of each area.

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April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Downtown - Midtown - Northwest Boulevard Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


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Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


MIDTOWN NEIGHBORHOOD

BOISE AVENUE

4TH STREET

MONTANA AVENUE

ROOSEVELT AVENUE

NODE AT

4TH

AND ROOSEVELT

The intersection of 4th Street and Roosevelt Avenue and the surrounding blocks form the heart of the Midtown district. Revitalization of the district should start here, where the streetscape, building scale, and existing businesses set a suitable framework for a neighborhood commercial node. While there are existing commercial uses such as the dry cleaners and Capone’s restaurant, there are also many opportunities for enhancement of the district. Public efforts and improving the area should focus on the following general areas, which will be detailed below: § § §

Public spaces Storefront improvement Redevelopment

Given limited resources, revitalization should initially focus on the stretch of 4th Street between Foster and Boise Avenues. When implemented, the combination of actions listed below will create a true sense of place and should be categorized as an Immediate Action in the prioritization process. Public Spaces The physical environment of Midtown currently suffers from a lack of maintenance. Tired and rusty street lamps and broken sidewalks tell the passer-by that this is an area that has seen better times. While the streets have been recently paved, there is little to encourage the pedestrian to walk through the district. Enhancements to the physical realm will set a proper tone for revitalization and will send a signal that things are changing in Midtown. Specific improvements in the public realm should include: § §

Sidewalks: Many of the sidewalks are crumbling and are in need of replacement. Bulb-outs at intersections: The sidewalks should bulb out at intersections to reduce crossing distances for pedestrians, thereby enhancing safety, slowing traffic speeds, and creating additional space for landscaping. 87

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


§ §

Street furniture and trees: The addition of benches, trees, planters, bike racks, and other fixtures help to decorate and define the space. The larger sidewalks at intersections are particularly suitable for these items. Ornamental lighting: An ornamental lighting scheme adds character and enhances safety.

Cost summary: Item Sidewalks – rebuild with bricks or pavers Bulb-outs Street furniture Ornamental lighting – including underground wiring Scored concrete crosswalks

Cost per unit $50 per lineal foot $10,000 per corner $6,000 per block face $50,000 per block $2500 per crosswalk

Units 1000 each side of street 6 corners 5 block faces

Total $100,000

5

$250,000

6

$15,000

TOTAL

$455,000

$60,000 $30,000 Existing section at 4th Street between Roosevelt and Boise avenues.

STOREFRONT IMPROVEMENT

Storefront improvement projects are a low-cost and effective way to dress up a tired retail area. Many cities have storefront programs that utilize matching grants to business and building owners. LCDC should consider this type of program for 4th Street.

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Most storefront improvement programs are operated by cities and are specifically targeted to certain neighborhoods. The granting agency offers direct or matching grants for improvements to the facades of buildings in order to improve the look of a retail district. Usually these grants are limited to exterior improvements only. The agency begins by receiving applications from building and business owners. When a business leases, but does not own, its building, the consent of the building owner is required. Often, grants are available to both the building owner and the tenant, allowing for two grants to enhance the same building – even

Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Proposed improvements shown in section at 4th Street between Roosevelt and Boise avenues. Reversion to two-way traffic south of Harrison Avenue is proposed.

April 2003


when the building and business owner are the same. Grants may be used for any type of exterior improvements including, but not limited to, window repair and replacement, lighting, awnings, doors, paint, signage, and professional services fees (architects and designers). Some programs include a limited amount of free time (paid for by the agency) from a selected list of local architects, while others leave this up to the applicant. Usually, the applicant must complete the improvements and submit receipts before the matching grant is made. A storefront program could be operated directly through LCDC, or LCDC could seek out a community partner to manage the program. While the most accessible source of funding would be through LCDC’s tax increment financing allocation, the storefront improvement program could be leveraged with CDBG and other state and federal grants.

ROOSEVELT AVE

Existing plan view along 4th Street between Roosevelt and Boise avenues.

In Midtown, the row of storefronts along the east side of 4th Street between Reid and Montana avenues should be initially targeted for a storefront improvement program. These buildings are at the heart of the district and would have the greatest positive impact if they were upgraded. With full participation by existing building and business owners, a grant or matching grant program would be sufficient to have a positive impact on Midtown’s revitalization. The storefront program could easily be expanded to other LCDC districts.

POTENTIAL THRU BLOCK PEDESTRIAN CONNECTION

MONTANA AVE

4TH STREET

Proposed plan view with street improvements at 4th Street between Roosevelt and Boise avenues.

Storefront improvement cost summary: Item Cost per building Matching grant up to $15,000 $15,000 Matching grant up to $25,000 $25,000

# Buildings 10

Total $150,000

10

$250,000

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April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


REDEVELOPMENT

Possibly in lieu of storefront improvement, some sites may be best suited for complete redevelopment by LCDC. This is most likely to make sense where there is little or no value remaining in existing structures or the site is already vacant. An analysis using county assessor data reveals the following sites have a high ratio of land to improvement (implying that the structures have little or no value). As a selecting criteria, we have chosen sites that have a land to improvement value of greater than 1.5 (the land is 1.5 times more valuable than the structures that sit on it). Also included are vacant properties (ones that indicate zero improvements). Refer to the Development Opportunities Framework Plan. In the core area of Midtown between Reid and Montana Avenues, four properties fit these criteria. The two small properties totaling approximately 8,400 square feet are already owned by the Lake City Development Corporation. Two additional properties are currently valued by the county assessor as follows: Acquisition cost summary Property # Description 1 Lot size 4,750 s.f. 2 Vacant parcel, 4,270 s.f., same owner as above

Assessed value $26,259 $19,070

Add 15% $3,939 $2,861

TOTAL $30,198 $21,931

TOTAL

$52,129

Existing storefronts between Reid and Montana avenues along 4th Street.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


Further research will be needed to identify the highest and best use for the properties for redevelopment. However, given our understanding of the neighborhood and the Coeur d’Alene market, LCDC should consider the following when planning the redevelopment of these sites: §

§

§

Looking Northeast along 4th Street from Roosevelt Avenue.

With the focus of retail Downtown and, more significantly, north of I-90, new retail on 4th Street will struggle, especially with the higher rents that will be needed to support new construction. Retail space should initially be limited to renovation of existing structures along 4th Street. As in Downtown, the addition of housing to Midtown will have the greatest positive impact and may be the most supportable by current market conditions. Multifamily housing, primarily rentals, should be considered. To increase the diversity of uses, mixed-use projects should be considered. While housing is often located above retail, we have noted that retail is not strong here. Instead, housing could be located over services like medical and insurance offices, banks, and other walk-in uses that are not strictly retail, but have a street presence nonetheless. Similarly, live-work units should be considered, where housing units are directly connected to streetlevel office and workspace.

TOTAL COST SUMMARY

A summary of the recommended improvements for the 4th and Roosevelt neighborhood node is as follows: Project Streetscape improvements Storefront improvement program (grants only) Redevelopment opportunities (acquisition only) TOTAL

Cost $440,000 $250,000 $52,000 $742,000

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April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


REMOVE ONE-WAY COUPLET

The new freeway interchange on Northwest Boulevard has diverted much of the traffic that used to travel 3rd and 4th Streets to travel between I-90 and Downtown. Returning 3rd and 4th Streets to two-way streets would have many beneficial effects on the Midtown district. First, it would give two-way visibility to the retail merchants, allowing them to benefit from drive-by traffic in both directions – essentially doubling their exposure. Second, with parking on both sides of the street and two-way traffic, people would instinctively drive slower, which would make the area more pedestrian friendly and safer. While removal of the couplet is a single project, it has many parts: Immediate Actions § Traffic studies: There is much to be studied before deciding to revert 3rd and 4th Streets back to two-way traffic. While the consultant team believes that it will be a positive move for Midtown, there could be unintended consequences or unforeseen problems that would prevent it from being possible. A detailed traffic impact analysis should be performed early to analyze the current and proposed system. An alternate consideration could be to convert only a portion of 4th Street to two-way traffic – the section from Harrison Avenue south to Downtown would be a logical section to begin. § Applications for state grants: Depending upon the results of the traffic analysis, the City and LCDC should pursue grants from the State and other sources to supplement tax increment financing to pay for the improvements. § Reconsideration of land uses along each street: Changing the traffic pattern on Fourth would have far-reaching land-use impacts. Certain properties that currently are automobile-oriented may be more suitable to pedestrian and neighborhood-serving uses after the traffic pattern is changed. The Preferred Land Use Framework Plan should serve as a guide for future zoning for Midtown.

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Long Term Actions Long term actions will likely include physical improvements to the street if the decision is made to pursue a traffic pattern change. In addition to the obvious physical changes such as new signalization, signage, and striping, there should also be many other streetscape improvements, which have been described earlier in the Neighborhood Node project.

Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

821 N. 4th Street is an ideal candidate for redevelopment. A vacant lot adjacent to the property is an ideal complement acquisition for co-development .

These enhanced storefronts have residential or office space above.

April 2003


EMPLOYMENT CENTER

Although the properties are outside the LCDC area, the recently vacated auto dealerships along 4th Street will have a substantial influence on the success of the entire Midtown district. Therefore, it is essential that they be addressed regardless of LCDC’s current or future jurisdiction over them. Due to the large number of sites and total acreage, they could damage the entire corridor if they remain vacant. Likewise, they could help improve the entire corridor if they are returned to a supportive, active use. While the site area would be sufficient for big box or other retailers, it is unlikely that these uses could be lured away from the northern part of town. Furthermore, large, destination retailers would do little to enhance adjacent neighborhoods. However, large sites suitable for employment centers are rarely found in such close-in locations. The auto dealership sites represent a unique opportunity for Coeur d’Alene to attract employers into the heart of the community. For example, by partnering with the Education Corridor initiative, linkages could be made with North Idaho College and the University of Idaho to attract employers and provide training and education for workers.

This retail area has been enhanced with street trees, ornamental lighting, street furniture, and bulb-outs with on-street parking. Shops have some office and residential accommodations above them.

Immediate Actions § Prepare an urban renewal plan to incorporate former auto dealer lots into an urban renewal area: LCDC should continue existing efforts to analyze the area in preparation for creating a new urban renewal area for the northern section of 4th Street. This is a necessary first step to allowing LCDC to have jurisdiction over the properties and enabling LCDC to spend money on improvements and programs. § Acquire the sites for land-banking: As soon as an urban renewal plan is approved, LCDC should acquire the former auto lots in order to land bank them while further planning is done to identify specific uses.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


Long Term Actions § Secure partnerships with NIC and UI to support and lead the project and potentially locate certain programs there. LCDC can play an integral part in securing the sites and funding improvements, but the discussion of what should replace the auto lots should be a community-wide process. § Conduct an economic development study with LCDC’s community partners to identify strategic industries and needs. § Prepare development requests for qualifications (RFQs) and requests for proposals (RFPs) to solicit development partners. § Develop an employment center with partnerships between schools and employers; § Open discussions with Jobs Plus to identify possible users. Jobs Plus is an indispensable community resource and should be an integral partner to defining and implementing an employment center. § Pursue grants for funding of programs and improvements. Leverage resources wherever possible.

Infill development should be compatible in its use and design with its neighbors. Mixed uses can enliven a neighborhood center.

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Lake District Strategic Plan

Midtown

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


NORTHWEST BOULEVARD PUBLIC RIGHT OF WAY IMPROVEMENTS

Many of the undeveloped parcels along Northwest Boulevard are likely to be developed following the same pattern of uses of existing development without the participation by LCDC or other public entities. However, the quality of the public realm, and hence the precedent set for private development, will be aided by further public investment in improvements. Certain actions can begin immediately, while others will be contingent upon property acquisition and relocation, which may take a number of years. Immediate Actions § Wayfinding and gateway features: While Northwest Boulevard has been greatly improved, much still needs to be done to make it a true gateway to Downtown. In its current state, it acts as a high-quality boulevard, but does not do so in a way that announces one’s arrival in the premier city that is described in the vision. LCDC should work with the City (and others) to fund and implement further improvements to the Northwest Boulevard right of way that will both reinforce its role as a gateway to one of the Northwest’s greatest cities as well as set a high standard for adjacent private development. § Undergrounding of utilities: This project was dropped from the recent streetscape improvements, but should be reconsidered. LCDC should continue to work with utilities and the City to explore technical and funding solutions to burying overhead lines. Long Term Actions § Improvement of pedestrian and vehicular connections to Midtown neighborhoods: Concurrent with Midtown and Downtown planning processes, additional connections should be made between Northwest Boulevard and the neighborhoods to the east. As it is today, there are few connections. With the eventual build out of Riverstone and the Education Corridor, more connections will be necessary to unify the districts. § Provision of public river and trail access points: With the relocation of the mill and the eventual build out of Riverstone, public access to the river will be critical. LCDC should work with all property owners to ensure that public access to the river is available in as many locations as possible. Further, the Spokane to Coeur d’Alene trail system should be improved throughout the Northwest Boulevard corridor. April 2003

95

Lake District Strategic Plan

Northwest Boulevard

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


EDUCATION CORRIDOR

The Education Corridor initiative – the expansion of NIC and UI campuses northward along the River – has the potential to establish Coeur d’Alene as a premier center of higher education for the inland Northwest. The Education Corridor will be a major influence in shaping the Northwest Boulevard district, and its influences will ripple far beyond into Downtown, Midtown, and all of Coeur d’Alene. Implementing the Education Corridor concept must begin with additional planning and defining goals in order to guide physical projects in later stages. Immediate Actions § Prepare an Education Corridor strategic plan: Full implementation of the Education Corridor concept will have significant land use implications. It will involve the construction of many buildings (educational, residential, and commercial), it will require parking, transportation, and circulation improvements, and it will require the involvement of many stakeholders, ranging from the colleges themselves to the City to Coeur d’Alene residents. LCDC should continue to work in partnership with the colleges to define the process. It is recommended that LCDC take a leadership role in preparing the strategic plan, since the plan must encompass the surrounding properties and streets in addition to the campuses themselves. § Assist in property acquisitions for college facilities and housing: While a strategic plan has not yet been completed, LCDC should assist NIC and UI in acquiring strategic properties for the expanded campuses and for related commercial or residential development. § Facilitate relocation of existing uses where needed, including the sawmill: The mill site is at the heart of the Northwest Boulevard district and the Education Corridor campus. Since acquiring railroad rights of way and other actions are contingent upon relocation of the mill, it should be a high priority to speed up this process.

96

Long Term Actions § Implement the strategic plan: The Education Corridor Strategic plan will identify many projects that will combine to create an urban neighborhood in the Northwest Boulevard corridor. Those projects that are appropriate for implementation by LCDC should be quickly integrated into to LCDC’s budget and project schedule.

Lake District Strategic Plan

Northwest Boulevard Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


PRIORITIZATION MATRIX Following is a prioritization matrix that shows the many projects that were described earlier and their relative priority.

T A HL RLE EP RDOI JSET CR TI CST: S P R O J E C T S & P R I O R I T I E S Timeline

Now 3-5 5-10 10+

DOWNTOWN Cultural Center Land acquisition & assembly

Detailed feasibility study Human Rights Center

Music or arts festivals Marketing campaigns Coordination with new library Pursue grants, donations, other funding sources Establish partnership with private arts organizations Theater or performing arts center

� � � � � � � �

Urban plaza(s) Parking Detailed parking analysis Validation/valet program(s) Create public-private partnerships to link new parking capacity to private development Acquire land in appropriate locations Identify key sites for future parking facilities, relative to existing & desired land uses Civic Campus Consistent urban design features

� � � � �

� �

� � �

City hall renovations/expansion

� �

Public/ Private Private

New government offices

Collaborate w/private organizations (Chamber of Commerce)

Public

� � � � �

� � �

Outdoor amphitheater

April 2003

Responsibility

In Years

� � �

97

� Lake District Strategic Plan

Prioritization Matrix

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


PRIORITY DOWNTOWN PROJECTS DOWNTOWN MIDTOWN Urban Housing Land acquisition for future housing sites Multifamily housing tax abatement program Create partnerships w/housing providers Partner w/higher education for student housing Downtown Home rehabilitation/redevelopment project Homeownership programs

� � � � � �

Public-private housing partnerships 3rd & Garden Housing

Acquire properties Secure rehabilitation partnerships

Renovate properties and resell DOWNTOWN – NW BLVD. Garden Avenue Corridor

Property acquisition

Streetscape plan

� � �

� �

� � � �

98

Signage, civic monument and historical markers

Lake District Strategic Plan

Prioritization Matrix Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

� �

� �

Streetscape improvements

Traffic calming

� � � � �

� �

New intersection

DOWNTOWN – MIDTOWN – NW BLVD. Parks and Public Implementation of Civic and Open Spaces Space Framework Plan Development of sidewalk dining programs Refined streetscape character elements for each subdistrict Pedestrian improvements

� �

� �

� � � �

� �

� �

� April 2003


PRIORITY MIDTOWN PROJECTS MIDTOWN Neighborhood Façade improvement program Node at 4th and Roosevelt Small business assistance Acquisition and demolition of vacant and burned out properties Streetscape improvements Signage and banners

� � � �

Signals and traffic calming Infill multifamily housing along 4th Street Remove One- Traffic study way Couplet Apply for state grants for funding Reconsider appropriate land uses along each street Employment Urban renewal plan Center Land acquisition

� �

� � � � �

� � � � � �

� �

Prepare development requests for qualifications (RFQs) and requests for proposals (RFPs) to solicit development partners Develop employment center Open discussions with Jobs Plus to identify possible users Pursue grants for funding

� � �

Partnerships with NIC and UI Economic development study

� �

� � �

� � �

99

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Prioritization Matrix

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


PRIORITY PROJECTS

IN THE

NORTHWEST BOULEVARD CORRIDOR

NORTHWEST BOULEVARD Public ROW Wayfinding and gateway features Improvements Under grounding of utilities Pedestrian and vehicular connections to Midtown Provision of public river and trail access points Education Master plan Corridor Property acquisition Facilitate relocation of existing uses Establish formal public-public partnership with educational institutions Implement the many projects of the master plan

� �

� � � �

� � �

� �

� � �

� �

100

Lake District Strategic Plan

Prioritization Matrix Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

April 2003


NEXT STEPS The LCDC Lake District Strategic Plan lays out a planning framework and an action plan that will serve LCDC well over time and identifies many projects and actions to consider as part of Coeur d’Alene’s renaissance. Three Districts are addressed: Downtown, Midtown, and Northwest Boulevard. The recommended projects and actions are both short and long term and include a variety of public, private, and public-private actions. The focus of the next phase will be implementation of the highest priority projects. Immediate recommended actions and tasks include the following: §

City Council to adopt, by resolution, the spirit and intent of the LCDC Lake District Strategic Plan.

§

Identify no less than ten projects and/or actions for implementation in 2003. The projects and actions will strike a balance between: Short term and long term projects Early successes Public projects Private projects Joint public-private projects

§

Explore the formation of a broad task force to guide LCDC in the implementation of the projects and to act as a forum for the involvement of many important community stakeholders. 101

April 2003

Lake District Strategic Plan

Next Steps

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho


§

With City staff and consultants, identify probable funding sources. These include identifying grant sources that can leverage tax increment financing and finding ways to leverage public investments with private investments.

102

3. Establish a multifamily housing tax abatement program. (p. 77) Downtown-Midtown 4. Garden Avenue housing – Acquire properties and begin rehabilitation. Form supporting partnerships. (p. 79-82) Downtown-Northwest Boulevard 5. Garden Avenue Corridor – Prepare streetscape and traffic plan and acquire properties as appropriate. (p. 83)

Lake District Strategic Plan

Next Steps

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

PublicPublic

PublicPrivate

Private

2003 Projects Downtown 1. Acquire property for land banking and redevelopment. (p. 75, 83) 2. Conduct detailed parking inventory and demand analysis. (p. 74)

Public

The following table shows the high priority projects that should begin in 2003. As the table shows, there is a good balance between public and public-private projects, which are spread throughout all three districts, and that for most projects, 2003 is just the beginning of the process.

Steps beyond 2003

X X

Implement recommendations of parking study.

X

X

X

Continued acquisitions and rehabilitations.

Construct designed elements.

April 2003


8. Traffic study to remove one-way couplet – Prepare a detailed traffic analysis to evaluate the feasibility and impacts of removing the 3rd/4th Street one-way couplet through the heart of Midtown. (p. 92) 9. Prepare an urban renewal plan to incorporate the former auto lots into the LCDC jurisdiction for future use as a major employment center. (p. 93)

PublicPublic

PublicPrivate

Private

Public

2003 Projects Midtown 6. Façade improvement program – Design a publicly-funded storefront improvement program to enhance the facades of 4th Street buildings. (p. 88, 89) 7. Property acquisitions – Acquire vacant and underutilized properties for future redevelopment. (p. 90, 91)

X

X

Prepare redevelopment plans and begin construction. If feasible, begin implementation of two-way traffic.

X

X

Upon adoption, prepare a master plan and implementation strategy for the new area.

Northwest Boulevard

It is recommended that the LCDC Lake District Strategic Plan be updated by LCDC every five years in order to respond to changing conditions and new opportunities.

April 2003

10. Form Education Corridor partnerships to help coordinate financing and master planning for an expanded higher education district. (p. 95, 96)

Steps beyond 2003

X

After partnerships are secured, prepare a master plan to guide development.

103

Lake District Strategic Plan

Next Steps

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Profile for Tony Berns

LCDC Strategic Plan -April 10, 2003  

Lake City Development Corporation is Coeur d'Alene's Urban Renewal Agency.

LCDC Strategic Plan -April 10, 2003  

Lake City Development Corporation is Coeur d'Alene's Urban Renewal Agency.

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