City Government

Neighbor Cool To Snow Park Idea

Joan Johnston lives near the proposed winter terrain park off Horseshoe Bend Rd. and opposes it. The GUARDIAN will gladly offer space to any interested party who supports the park on Ada County land.

Guest Opinion
By Joan Johnston

There is more to the snow terrain park proposal issue than just water and the other concerns like traffic, noise, etc., the public has brought to the Eagle City Council. Its about providing free tax-exempt land for Ryan Neptune to operate his business on.
Sledding on a snowy hill near Boise, Idaho, USA.
Because the City of Eagle is attempting to circumvent the proper processes for the snow terrain park proposal and has not applied for the proper permits to develop this proposal, they’re now attempting to purchase land from Ada County, and in essence, give it to Ryan Neptune to develop and operate his snow terrain park for the next 20 years.

The only reason for them to purchase this land off Old Horseshoe Bend Rd. at this time is for Neptune’s for-profit business. This land was originally purchased as a buffer to the landfill and was never intended to be developed.  Now the City of Eagle wants to develop it by allowing a for-profit private business to come in and have exclusive use of the land and facilities. The existing bike and foot trails could become secondary to the private business.

Therefore,existing bike and foot trails in the path of the proposed slopes may be moved.  Even if the City of Eagle purchases only a small portion of the land, Eagle has zoning which allows a private business to operate on public land.

The type of business t proposed for the park is really immaterial — no commercial/for-profit business should ever be allowed to have exclusive use of any public land or public facilities for 20 years. The only way to keep any for-profit business from operating on this public land is to give the Ada County Commissioners a reason not to sell the land to the City of Eagle.

The Ada County Commissioners want to hear from Ada County residents about what they envision and/or their desired use of the land.  You can help by getting the word out to others, and testifying at the upcoming public informational meeting on December 18, 2013 at the Ada County Courthouse, 200 W Front Street, 1st Floor at 6 pm in the Commissioner’s Hearing Room.

If you can’t make this public meeting, you can e-mail the Commissioners at bocc1@adaweb.net or write them at Ada County Board of Commissioners, Ada County Courthouse, 200 W Front Street, 3rd Floor, Boise, ID   83702 with your comments about how you would like to see the land be used. 

Comments & Discussion

5 comments for “Neighbor Cool To Snow Park Idea”

  1. Western Voice
    Dec 8, 2013, 10:15 am

    I hope many residents will show up for this hearing. The City of Eagle was wrong to move forward on this project without proper due diligence and in light of the fact that they do not own the land. As stated earlier, I believe the goal was to garner as much public support as possible to create an alliance. Good for the Commissioners for standing up and forcing them to slow down. I would encourage Eagle residents to pay attention to the future impact if the sale goes through. And, so glad the two new council members will be on board in January; there has been enough nonsense with the Mary/Mark show. It is time for the Mayor to get control of city council.

  2. people who move next to undeveloped land run the risk of future development and loose their credibility to complain. Have little sympathy for the NIMBY people.

    However…….not sure the gov’t should be giving land for free to a private enterprise, especially without a competitive bid for development ideas. I say put the land development out to bid, and choose the best deal for the citizens.

  3. Shocked voter
    Dec 8, 2013, 8:27 pm

    It is amazing how fast our City council forgets how the previous councils decided they know more how
    to run the city than the residents wanted it run. It is time to start thinking about how the voters want it run. Wake up and leave the open space as it is and keep the public land open to the public. I CAN’T believe they are trying to buy the land from Ada County to let a private business dictate how our open space can be used. I believe they need to take a lesson from the (Eagle) City Hall Fiasco.

  4. Aggrieved Party
    Dec 9, 2013, 12:42 pm

    The means and the ends simply do not fit in this project. City leaders wrongly assume that a snow park is a good fit for the area. Clearly it is NOT. The vast majority of area around the park is currently a bedroom community which values its’ peace and quiet above most all else. Noise violations/complaints (snow making at night) could be the death knell for this project in the long run. This park is not broken, and needs no fixes of the commercial venture kind. Open access at no charge is the highest and best use of this property and should remain so.

  5. Rod in SE Boise
    Dec 9, 2013, 4:57 pm

    Local government behaving badly – again.

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