More than five years ago, the Ada County Highway District demolished the popular Smoky Davis meat shop to widen a State Street intersection. Now, a long-planned affordable-housing building is about to be built there.
Shellan Rodriguez, the owner of SMR Development in Boise, said construction of the 102 apartments is slated to begin by the end of August and last about two years.
Pacific West Communities Inc. and SMR Development, acting as the project manager, are building the $36 million, five-story building at 3912 W. State St. in conjunction with the city, which bought the site from ACHD. The site is just west of the widened intersection of State and Veterans Memorial Parkway.
The building, known as the Wilson Station Apartments, would be primarily low-income housing for those with incomes up to 80% and as low as 30% of the area median income.
For a two-person household in 2023, 80% of the median income in Boise is $57,050, while 30% is $21,400 per year, according to the city. Rent for those households would be set at $1,426 and $535 per month, respectively.
“Of 102 units, there are four that will be market-rate,” Rodriguez told the Statesman by phone.
While the units will help meet the growing demand for housing in the region, Rodriguez said thousands of units are still needed.
“I think everyone knows the extensive need here in the Treasure Valley,” Rodriguez said. “Having safe and stable housing is sort of a bedrock of creating successful lifestyles and successful lives.”
There’s a lot of risk to building a project like this, Rodriguez said, but there are also a lot of different sources of funds to make the development economically viable. The city, state and the city’s urban renewal agency are all putting in efforts to get the apartments built.
“It’s insanely critical right now,” Rodriguez said.
The apartments are also reserving a small space on the ground floor intended to be turned into a day care center to help combat a nationwide day care shortage.
“Finding reliable child care is difficult for working families,” Rodriguez said. “It’s a good use of that space.”
Using ground-floor commercial spaces for child care is a creative way to serve families and works well with affordable housing, she said.
The day care center would be available to anyone, including tenants.
Pacific West Communities has also developed, designed and built other affordable housing projects in Boise including Adare Manor and New Path Community Housing, according to the city’s urban renewal agency, Capital City Development Corp.