8th and Main spire redesigned, again

Scaffolding surrounds the controversial spire at the top of Boise's 8th and Main tower. Gardner Co. says its new design will include darker aluminum cladding that will blend in with the darker tones of the surrounding glass. Complaints from the public moved the company to redesign the building element.

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by Jamie Grey

Bio | Email | Follow: @KTVBJamieGrey

KTVB.COM

Posted on December 12, 2013 at 10:14 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 13 at 3:16 PM

BOISE -- The spire that's caused quite a stir in Downtown Boise on the building at 8th and Main is going through yet another revision.

The topper has caused some controversy, and the city had some complaints. Some people complained to the city that the spire looked like the top of an LDS temple, which they didn't think was representative of the whole city.

After the comments, the building's developer, Gardner Company, decided to make changes to the design, saying they never intended to make any religious statement or offend anyone.

The new plan involved putting glass around the spire, but Gardner Company's Chief Operating Officer Tommy Ahlquist says they recently found out the specialty glass would take six months to get shipped in. So, on Wednesday, the company filed yet another revision to the spire with the city that makes changes without glass.

"We're going to reclad the aluminum that ended up being so bright, and I think was the biggest problem. So the cladding will change. The aluminum will be recladded with a darker color, kind of a darker color, that matches the glass," Ahlquist said.

Ahlquist says the building is still very much on track to open in the first part of 2014, and he says this new design will mean they can have the spire finished as well.

"I think the look is essentially the same, and we can get it done in a much quicker time frame. Much quicker. Before January 15, so it's done. Hopefully, Jamie, this is the last time we're talking about the spire!" Ahlquist said.

Scaffolding is already up to get going right away on all of the recladding work and replacing the lights, which will be colored LED bulbs that can be changed for special seasons or occasions.

"We do have the option of changing the color, which is kind of interesting. So the idea was to have it be a blue light up onto the spire. But we will have the ability to make it red, or green... Blue seems to be a pretty good color for Boise!" Ahlquist said.

Tenants are expected to get the green light to start moving in pretty soon. Developers are just waiting on final occupancy approvals.

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