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Welcome to Boise

Deciphering the Treasure Valley

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The Treasure Valley is not merely a collection of geographic locations with arbitrary names and interchangeable personalities.

Each town, and even each neighborhood, has its own history—a combination of geography, population and a heaping spoonful of je ne sais quoi. And while we might not be able to define it, it's that certain something that draws kindred spirits and creates distinct personalities.

Defining those more amorphous qualities is far more difficult than setting a physical boundary, but Boise Weekly is here to help you on both accounts. From all of Boise's neighborhoods to the farthest reaches of Canyon County, we're here to decipher the mystery that is the Boise metro area.

Here are the basics: The valley is bisected by Interstate 84, which also happens to be the main east-west route (even though it doesn't go directly east or west).

The division between Boise and Meridian is roughly at Eagle Road, although thanks to patchwork annexation, wandering borders make that an inexact science.

On the north end of the valley, both Eagle and Boise hug the Foothills, claiming some of the prime real estate in the valley. And while Eagle ends not far south of the Boise River, the City of Boise stretches much farther than most people realize: from the high desert and Lucky Peak Reservoir in the east to nearly the edge of the Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area in the far south.

The capital city includes everything from sagebrush plains and rugged river canyons to lush tree-lined streets. The city's centerpiece remains the Boise River, which cuts through the middle of town and is flanked by parks, the extensive Greenbelt and some of the most popular summer restaurant patios in town.

Further west, the once wide-open farms of Meridian have sprouted housing developments as far as the eye can see. While some have worried about a bedroom community fate for the 'burb, the city is working on plans to reclaim its historic downtown.

Further west still, Caldwell and Nampa are both trying to balance their own agricultural heritage in a changing world, while to the north and south, respectively, Star and Kuna are dealing with the same issues, just on a smaller scale.

In the following pages, you'll find more info about each community and their distinct personalities.