In writing this week's news feature on Jack's Urban Meeting Place, we went for a little lap around the Simplot site, bounded by Front and Myrtle streets on the north and south and Ninth and Eleventh to the east and west.
The four-block area is somewhat trapezoidal, or, as JUMP architect Susan Desko called it, "kind of like a piano ... Driving down Myrtle, you get this really dynamic kind of curve ahead of you."
We found a few surprises on the site. First of all, there is a Borah Street. The continuation of Broad Street (which runs through BoDo) is called Borah. There is currently access to surface parking via Borah Street, but citydesk hears that the Simplots are requesting that Borah and the alley that comes onto the property from Myrtle be abandoned to accommodate their plans for the site.
Also within the future JUMP (what do ya'll think we should call this? JUMP feels silly... like BoDo...) there is a network of railroad spurs that once served the downtown warehouse district. There are photos of all this stuff in the slide show below.
The Emerald Club and Knock 'em Dead Dinner Theater are slated for demolition in this project, but Breck Seiniger, Jr., the attorney who owns the law firm on the corner of Myrtle and Ninth, refused to sell his corner to the Simplot family.
"They made us an offer that wee didn't think was reasonable and we made them an offer that they didn't think was reasonable," Seiniger said.
When JUMP is built, if indeed it excludes commercial activity, Seiniger is thinking his corner might be prime real estate for some commercial activity... a Starbucks, perhaps?
And here is a little bonus treat. It is not super clear, but for a sneak peak of the landscape plan for JUMP, check out the future Web site for the project... look closely behind the little jumping girl...