Where does a city begin and end? In the old days, a city's borders were where the block grid system dissolved into frontier and farm lands. City planners would draw up scale maps—called plats—giving urban areas clearly defined borders. But when looking at huge cities like Houston or Chicago, those plats have been spilled over like too much water in a bathtub. Suburbs and urban decay have mottled the uniform squares of once distinct urban landscapes.
This has happened in Boise, as well. The City of Trees abuts Meridian, Eagle and a slew of subdivisions, extending well beyond its old borders. Today starting at 9 a.m. the Boise City Department of Arts and History is conducting hour-long walking tours of Boise's Civil War-era plat every two hours until 3 p.m. The tours leave the Sesqui-Shop, but plan to arrive 15 minutes ahead of your preferred tour's departure time. Plan for the weather with walking shoes, refillable water bottles and sunscreen.