News » Citydesk

End of the Line for Grapevine in Boise's North End

"The reason we're here is fellowship and staying sober. Most importantly, it's about helping somebody else. We've saved a lot of lives here."


Just before the holiday season last year, it was pretty clear the days were numbered for the Grapevine Club, a sober support and recovery center located in a building at 1518 W. Fort St.: The roof leaked and the electrical, plumbing and fire suppression systems were all out of code. In February, time ran out when the city of Boise sent an emergency notice to the building inhabitants informing them the structure was unsafe and asbestos and lead-based paint posed a serious health hazard.

The structure, a former fire station, has housed the Grapevine Club since 1952. Over the years, countless men and women have walked through the door of the Grapevine, where several daily meetings were held for addiction recovery based on the Twelve Step program.

"The reason we're here is fellowship and staying sober. Most importantly, it's about helping somebody else," Melissa, a regular Grapevine visitor, told Boise Weekly in 2014. "We've saved a lot of lives here."

Boise city staffers said they have been working with Grapevine to find new locations, including offering temporary space at the Boise Senior Center, but that building precludes 24/7 availability. Grapevine board members said they have since found alternative sites for meetings, but they're scattered around Boise.

The Boise City Council formally adopted a resolution May 2,stating the property at 1518 W. Fort St. "can no longer be used for public purposes."

City officials also agreed to auction off the property in "as-is" condition with a minimum bid of $50,000. Any net proceeds from the sale will go to Allumbaugh House, a regional detox and mental crisis center in West Boise.

If the property fails to receive a qualifying bid of $50,000 or greater at auction, city officials said they will sell the property "without meeting further statutory requirements," but would work with the Historic Preservation Commission to develop any restrictions or covenants to include in the possible sale of the property, including a historic preservation easement.