Tracking code caldwell guardian

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Downtown Business People Meet With Mayor Nancolas

A group of downtown business people met with Mayor Nancolas and City Attorney Mark Hilty regarding urban renewal investments in downtown Caldwell.  The citizen group in attendance was Joe Lombardo of Joe's Emporium, Glenn Koch, former Canyon County Commissioner and downtown property owner, Gina Lujack, a downtown property owner and Caldwell Realtor, Dustin Rose who is a downtown Realtor and myself.  The meeting lasted about 90 minutes.

The main subject was a resolution presented to the Mayor and City Council earlier this month asking:
1.  Dissolution of the current Urban Renewal board and and move this function to the City Council just as was done in Nampa earlier this year.

2.  That remaining UR funds be directed to downtown projects.

3.  That a committee of downtown business and property owners be formed to determine what UR money will be spent on from now to the sunset of the agency and beyond to administer funds that will continue to flow to the city until 2022.

Mayor Nancolas was receptive but also indicated he can't make the decision on the second two items because the city council is the city legislative body but would certainly bring this forward as an agenda item for the Mayor and City Council to take over the functions of the urban renewal board.

Also, discussed was making downtown a quiet zone with the train horns as trains travel through Caldwell.  Mayor Nancolas stated that he has already instructed staff to pursue this option.  The cost for this several years ago was in the $200k area to make the necessary improvements to the RR crossings in Caldwell prescribed by the railroad.

Next item discussed was how various codes and ordinances are interpreted by city staff and officials and how this is an impediment to business development downtown.  Urban Renewal board members not listening to downtown business owners along with purchasing businesses and getting certain uses out of downtown was also discussed along with the need to demolish a good number of structures in downtown.  Open space opportunity for business development was the point of this part of the meeting.

Everyone felt the Mayor had listened to the issues and problems presented and they will carry the message back to their downtown coalition members.  The coalition meets every Tuesday evening at 6:00 PM at Maddy's Plaza, near the corner of Main and Kimball.  Their next meeting will be held on April 29th.


  1. I will believe it when I see it. I have lived here most of my life and can't believe the train noise will ever go away. Downtown is a challenge and the real opportunity is for business startups to get off the ground with as little bureaucratic overhead as possible. Most businesses fail due to under-capitalization and Caldwell has erected some pretty serious barriers to businesses.

  2. I keep waiting for the moment in time TVCC pulls out of Caldwell. Then we will have another downtown building vacant. It will take some time and financial commitment to turn downtown Caldwell around. Urban renewal needs to put the same emphasis on downtown that it did in Sky Ranch Business Park. I see more business activity out there when I am out in that area. The same can happen in downtown but neglect on the part of city government is not a good plan for achieving the same success in downtown.

  3. Downtown Caldwell has a lot of property that really does not belong in downtown and need to be bought out and the property demolished. Clearing away the rubble from the past is a good start to "renewal". I can't think of any prospective developer who would pay full price for a dilapidated building only to have to demolish it and start from zero. It is reasonable to expect urban renewal monies to buy up properties and clear the land for a new investment.

    I have heard it over and over city council people are unwilling to do this because of the loss of tax revenue if they buy and clear properties. I thought that was the purpose and intent of urban renewal.


A public discourse on the issues of the day makes the world a better place.

We welcome comments but they will be moderated and edited if too long or do not have anything to do with the post.
Agree or disagree just do it without profanity or it won't get posted. Try to keep your comments to no more than 300 words. Too long and I will try to edit it down or simply delete the comment. The whole idea is to get people to read your comment. Don't use 10 words when one will do the job.

It's OK to have a difference of opinion but keep it civil. I have used the "delete" feature on myself at times.

The ANONYMOUS feature for comments seems to be the most user friendly. People have commented they have difficulty with the other methods of posting comments.