They’re b a a a ck!

Teenage boys are taught that “no means no,” but the Greater Boise Auditorium District G-BAD boys are at least a generation too old to understand that message.
Boise Grove.jpg

Voters told them “NO” at the polls on two occasions when they wanted to build a new convention center in downtown Boise. Developer Gary Christensen briefly considered doing a private deal and he too said “no thanks.”

Disregarding the three strikes and your are out rule, the G-BAD has come up with another plan. This time they want to build skyward, using hotel room taxes which are about to burn a hole in their collective pocket.

Architect Neil Hosford has been retained to look into the potential of expanding the existing convention center at 9th and Front from 85,000 square foot to 205,000 square feet by adding two more levels.

G-BAD chairman Stephenson Youngerman claims in a press release there is a demand for additional space and the board has a responsibility to address that demand.

The GUARDIAN can safely say the demand to shoehorn more ballrooms into downtown Boise doesn’t come from the voters who told them “NO” twice in the past.

Let’s hope the architect isn’t the same dude who wants to build a 17 story apartment building on a 30 foot wide strip of grass at 8th and Front next to the crosswalk. These folks should all be in the Idaho Legislature–no offense intended.

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. This is a “cart before the horse” issue. The business is NOT there for an expanded convention center so the G-BAD is trying to create the demand and justify the expansion.

    The G-BAD needs to follow the direction of the voters and stop trying to do end runs around them. Sounds like we need to look at replacing the G-BAD board members if they keep this up.

  2. Lets see… Simplot house that is “donated” to State that won’t cost us a cent

    School bond election that won’t cost us taxpayers a cent..

    Library bond that is hardly going to cost us taxpayers cent..

    A BIGGER convention center that isn’t going to cost us taxpayers a cent!

    My only question is why am I paying 3 times as much taxes as I was 10 years ago with all of these freebie…. I am so confused!

    But there is some good news… We might get $50.00 back from the State….Gee I think I will go get some strong liqueur and make that Christmas toddie that was on the Guardian web site a month ago…. I think us taxpayers are going to need it

  3. …..and I thought I was cynical.

    The Auditorium District’s only real offense is its poor choice of a title that creates the easily spoof-able acronym GBAD. At least we can feel reasonably sure they’re not wasting taxpayer money on a high dollar marketing and PR firm.

    I like the idea of a new convention center. B-FD if they came up with some creative financing. Hardly anything in the construction/real estate business gets done without financing.

    My question to B-Guard and commenters Max and Porcupine; can you tell us that you own your homes outright? (I’m assuming you’re not homeless people) None of you have ever had a mortgage? or a car loan? or a student loan?

    Student loans are backed by the taxpayers, correct? Maybe we should eliminate those too?

    To those of you who support a new convention center; I propose we start a search for a new and improved title and acronym to replace the currently abused one. In fact, it should be done before another lost election makes the Auditorium District a 3 -time loser.

    I’ve racked my brain for a new acronym for some 60 to 90 seconds now and couldn’t come up with one. But, for starters, how about B-GOOD or G-WHIZ?

  4. Boisecynic, I have a nifty new (G-BAD) name for you. How about “People’s Choice”?

    If they came up with something the people wanted as a whole, there would be no need to defend it.

  5. Anyone who supports a new convention center in downtown Boise is just plain smoking bad weed. I have many years in the convention business and Boise does not cut it as a convention town. OK so we build a “down town” convention center. The impacts of the venue are going to cost a lot of money and will be passed on to taxpayers. Real convention centers require lots of truck unloading space and truck parking space. Check out what a mess the Moscone Center is during a convention in San Francisco! If the price of fuel goes up, no business in their right mind is going to send sales people to Boise. The market is too small. What we really need is a fairgrounds we can be proud of like the one in Redmond, OR. A venue like that can handle most of our needs. The convention and trade show business is in a huge period of change and it is totaly dependent on the price of fuel for airlines and freight.

  6. boisecynic

    Your comment….

    “I like the idea of a new convention center. B-FD if they came up with some creative financing. Hardly anything in the construction/real estate business gets done without financing.”

    Creative financing is the same thing that University of Idaho did on the Idaho Place.. Do we really want taxpayers to do “Creative Financing”?

    We could change the name of the project to
    REPO…will save time when the taxpayers have to take it back with creative financing!

  7. I like boisecynic’s G-WHIZ acronym, ‘cos once again, they are trying to whiz on the voters and taxpayers.

  8. To take this one step further…

    Be it the poop farm issues at hand, downtown or whatever…

    City hall seems to work from a hidden agenda and make up their own rules as needed.

    They distort the facts, withhold information and do whatever it takes to accomplish their own goals regardless of public opinion, interest, request or need.

    When and where does it stop ? How does one get it to stop ?

    EDITOR NOTE–Wirt, the new “justice center” at 6th and Mhyrtle is a perfect example of what you are talking about. They did a lease-purchase deal and it is just a slick way to get around a bond election.

  9. Wirt

    Oh if we just would have elected Brandi none of this would have happened….;)

  10. Boisecynic, you’ve missed the point. G-Bad answers to the voters (i.e. taxpayers). The voters have said no, we don’t want to back this project. It’s that simple. If you’d like to build a convention center, by all means go out and get your own “mortgage” and put one up. The end.

  11. I like most of your opinions and you are dead wrong on this issue. The convention center expansion is a huge need for our urban core “downtown”. The studies make a strong case for the demand, we are losing convention business on a weekly basis due to lack of space. The primary opposition to this is AmeriTel. Why? AmeriTel makes it’s money on locations that are out of urban core’s. AmeriTel want the conventions at their facility. They fight this in every city they have facilities and they use the same tactic, creating fear that our taxes are paying the bill. The hotel tax pays the bill and they don’t like the hotel tax! Sprawl is our enemy, urban density is smart growth, convention space promotes urban business creating incentive for urban density. You are falling into the trap of a corporate empire interested in thier own greed not our city health. With my rant I will add the plan for 2 seperate convention spaces was misguided if not suspicious. I am glad they are looking at adding to the current convention center. It is also a fact that big convention business prefers holding events in one location.

    I will confess I own 4 businesses in downtown making my position a bit self-serving. Make no mistake about it I chose downtown for my businesses as I believe our city needs a strong urban core to thrive. Sprawl is our enemy and my choice to locate downtown is my stuborness to practice what I preach. My businesses would probably be performing better if I located one or two in planned developments in Eagle, Meridian, the mall. Please support the convention center plans, we need it badly!!! Fight developers that are destroying our open spaces and quality of life with misguided planned communities. Encourage good development in areas with developed infustructure.

    Dave Krick
    Bittercreek/Red Feather/Reef/The Front Door

  12. Woohoo, thanks Dave. I was feeling very lonely in my support of the new convention center. And thanks for bringing up that Ameritel slant as I had forgotten all about it.

    To the poster who said I should get my own mortgage and build the CC myself. Well, my credit is good, but not that good. However, I would be willing to invest some of my own money.

    Also, I’ll place a little side wager for $1000 with any of you, if the CC gets built with funding as proposed then there will be no default for at least 10 years (length of wager). Barring a nuclear war or asteriod collision.

    Downtown has a vast amount of wasted potential. With a new CC and construction of the Whitewater park and Esther Simplot Park and the 30th ST extension, we could truly have a wonderful downtown area. With construction of the 4 aforementioned amenities we might even be able to reincarnate the River Festival. Gulp, waiting for the flames regarding that one.

    If we give in to this “state of fear” then what will we have? Same old dirt lots and run down buildings?

    I must also confess I own 2 properties on the west side of downtown, so I too have a self-serving interest.

  13. Another Dave
    Jan 16, 2006, 9:27 pm

    I heartily agree with Dave. Boise downtown is growing with great new developments and downtown housing. Not the crap that went up in the 70s and 80s. An expanded convention center will help bring events and people downtown.

    BoiseCvnic, I doubt any of the doubters will take your bet. If they do, all the better.

    I admit that I attend things regularly at the Boise Convention Center. That is not a bias. I just happen to have my eyes open to the need for better facilities. People are already coming to Boise. Let’s give them even more reasons to come.

  14. boisecynic
    Get the River Festival back…. what a great idea. I’m sure the Convention Center will be sold out by all of the people from Caldwell, Nampa, Jerome, Burley, that did and will come back to Boise for that wonderful weekend of fun and merriment. Lets all not forget about the fireworks also. Right before the 4th of July is a great time to have it! Hey we might be able to buy back some of the repoed floats, buildings, etc… that we will need to start this again. I’m sure the City police will love to patrol it again… they only wrote off several hundred thousand that didn’t get paid! This will fit right into the Convention Center. Maybe we can use this for selling it to the voter in a few month! CONVENTION CENTER WILL BRING BACK THE RIVER FESTIVAL!

    I just hope that they put the floats back on the River when it returns. It was so fun to watch all of the electric lights on the floats go by when the river was at flood stage….. My My for the good old days…

  15. C’mon, people. Face it. We all know that right now, and every day, there are
    hundreds, probably thousands, perhaps millions of people in Rockford, Ill., Rome,
    N.Y., Miami, Fla.,
    Tokyo, Madrid, London ….
    discussing where to have their next annual convention or other major shindig.
    Imagine the conversations:
    “So, where should we go this year?
    “How about Las Vegas?”
    “Naw, Atlantic City.”{
    “Maybe Mexico City?”
    “Heck, why not Tokyo or Shanghai, or Macao, ort Nigeria … you know, someplace
    “Hey, great idea! How about Boise, Idaho?”
    “Boise? Wherethehell is that? Is it near Demoines or Sofa or Davenport or Settee
    … anyway, those other towns?”
    “Heck, I dunno, but I hear they’re gonna build a new convention center —- and
    it’ll maybe be right on top of the old one.”
    (Chorus of voices): “Wow. Yeah. Great idea. Hey, I’m for it. Me too, let’s hear it
    for Bossy Iowa or whatever you said; I mean, a new convention center, Wow, wow,
    Chairman: OK, it’s unanimous. Tosies, Idahowa it is.
    Meeting dismissed — start packing.”
    — gp

  16. The guardian hit the nail on the head. the voters told ” The auditorium district” – an outgrowth of CCDC-NO several times. These real estate moguls are telling the People ” we’ll get rich on your money,hook or crook.” a pretty smelly message.I suggest to all that they let the mayor,city council and all at the auditorium district know that the people do not want another un-needed fiasco downtown.

  17. At least 3 comments have been made regarding the voters turning down the bond to fund the new convention center. It’s true, twice the bond passage has been defeated, but the tone of those comments (that I get), is that the defeat is final, i.e. forever.

    Is that it? One or two elections decide all the rest of eternity. If that’s how things work, then George Washington, dead as he is, would still be our president, no?

    No-one, myself included (until now, see below), has offered up any actual facts and figures. Maybe someone could post other links with meaningful info so we could make an “informed” decision and carry on this debate in an “informed” way.

    Meaningful info would be; what size CCs do other comparable cities have? How were they funded? Are they making/losing money? Are attendance trends up or down? Choosing a city/s comparable to Boise will probably elicit even more arguments.

    Spending a few minutes on google, the best I could find regarding Boise was the following website;

    It states in paragraph 2: “Many local events have exceeded capacity of the Boise Centre on the Grove and cannot expand.” Besides that sentence being awkward, their cause might be better served by actually listing those “events” by name. And I know your next thought, and I agree, the site isn’t exactly an impartial site of meaningful info.

    I spent a while longer to find the following “comparable city” info, so check this out (we can’t let Spokane beat us up like this);

    Or read this lengthy, detailed and informative page:

    If nothing else, those 2 sites show that Spokane is way ahead of Boise in web publishing.

    BTW, B-Guard, is this a record long thread?
    ED NOTE-If they ever win one it will probably be the last word. Votes only count with G-BAD IF THEY WIN.

  18. To David Krik: Everytime I try to go to one of your establishments it’s too crowded. But i dig what you’ve done. What more do you want? Oh and by the way, for the Spokane envy crowd…they have a lot more hookers, street people,drugs and one of the highest murder and rape statistics in the nation. It makes me so hot thinking about that here in Boise. I can’t wait.
    This convention center idea is all about fast buck greed. Go visit a convention center in a downtown core, see if you want to spend time in the area. Go count the hookers plying their trade right next to the Portland Convention Center. At night you can count the crack pipes firing up in the area around the LA Convention Center. We need a sustainable business center that is fun and alive, a Pike Street market type thing comes to mind. A place where people can work, play and enjoy life. Sorry BoDo sucks massively.

  19. Impossible, how GOOD your work is. I am realy surprised.

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