CVS proposal sparks opposition from Boise neighborhood

CVS building proposal sparks opposition.

BOISE - The look of a North End neighborhood could change drastically if the proposal to build a CVS and drive-thru pharmacy passes the Boise Planning and Zoning Commission next week. 

The proposed CVS would go on the corner of 17th and State Streets in Boise. 

"It's just a bad plan you know?" said Lori Dicaire, an organizer of a CVS protest on Saturday. "It's a bad plan all the way around."

Cody Riddle, current planning manager with Planning and Development Services, says there are positive aspects to the building. 

"It's an additional retail use, it provides a service to the community," said Riddle.

Three mixed-use houses on Jefferson Street would become the CVS parking lot. The State Farm office on the corner of 17th and State streets would be where part of the store will be located.
 
"Other areas in the North End have historic district things like that, that's not the case here," said Riddle.

They will either be demolished or relocated depending on the agreement that those home and business owners come to with CVS. 
 
"It's my understanding the applicant team is looking into relocating the three structures on Jefferson and perhaps that other office building on State," Riddle said. 

If an agreement can't be made, Riddle says at that point if the applicant doesn't have rights to the entire property it may change their proposal. 

The building that cannot be moved and will have to be demolished if the plan is approved is the Arcade Building. It's home to a couple of businesses and 23 units of affordable housing. 

"They'll lose their homes, they'll have nowhere to go," Dicaire said. "Some of the folks we've talked to have said they will return to the shelter."

Heading to a shelter is exactly what Tammy McMillen fears. 

"I have lived on the street before years ago, and it's not fun," McMillen said. "It's like, where am I going to go? I can't afford paying any more than what I do right now to live here."

Another major point of opposition from several neighborhood associations is the location. 

"We already have three pharmacies in the area why put another one? Why?" said McMillen. 

"It'll be next to the Rite Aid, across the street from the Albertsons, and three blocks away from a locally owned pharmacy called Customedica," Dicaire said.

Riddle says according to city codes and ordinances proximity to other similar retail users doesn't make or break a proposal. 

"We have very specific set of criteria that we look at when making our recommendation and that the commission ultimately makes a decision on," Riddle said. 

Criteria like compatibility with other businesses in the neighborhood, how it will impact other properties, and if there is proper infrastructure in place to support the new business. 

"If it happens, it happens I'm going to take it one day at a time and figure it out," McMillen said. 

There is a Planning and Zoning Commission meeting on December 4 at 6 p.m. at City Hall. McMillen says that she has made it a point to be able to attend that hearing to make her voice heard. 

Riddle says any decision made whether it's an approval or denial can be appealed to the City Council.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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