SEP 2017 EDITION
Boise’s Humble Roots
The Changing City of Trees
These days, Boise is a bustling hub of development and business, with one of the most rapidly expanding populations in the country. Despite its growth, I still believe that the Treasure Valley remains a supportive hotbed for small businesses. Sure, a few corporations have moved in, and a some local companies have grown far beyond their small-business roots, but the fact remains that the little guys still account for so much of the city’s livelihood. I think the Treasure Valley’s drastic changes over the past 30 years have really been a double-edged sword. It’s not necessarily bad or good — it’s different. I can sit here and say that, sure, it’d be great to live in the Boise of old,completelydevoidoftraffic,withhuntinggroundsrightinyourbackyard, but youcanbesure that in that versionof theCityof Trees,MicroTechsimply couldn’t exist. We depend on the thriving local small-business economy as much as they depend on us. Living in Boise for so long certainly gives you the feeling that you have some claim on it, and that can make you wish it hadn’t changed — especially when you’re driving down Eagle or Chinden at the height of rush hour. But the influx of newcomers and the success of tried-and-true local businesses (like our own) drive a growth and prosperity that has become the lifeblood of this great city. Truly, it’s been a privilege to see Boise flourish during the many years I’ve lived here.
Years back, before Boise exploded and long before people began migrating into Idaho, I was growing up between Maple Grove and Five Mile, far from any semblance of human civilization. It was absolutely a place you’d call “The Sticks.” Corn fields and unkempt, undeveloped land stretched out far to the west from our house. Though the first roots of development were starting to spread between Cloverdale and 5 Mile, Meridian, Nampa, and Eagle barely existed at the time.
Like many others, my dad came over to Idaho from the Basque country when he was about 14, invited over by his relatives who had been living here
“At the time, Eagle Road was just your typical two-lane highway with dirt on both sides — a far cry from the traffic nightmare it is today.”
for years. My mom was one of the rare Boise natives, living in an even more undeveloped Idaho long before I ever showed up.
As a child, I obviously had no inkling of how Boise might end up. My dad and I would drive just down the road, over to the Glenwood bridge, and we’d be in duck-hunting territory. At the time, Eagle Road was just your typical two-lane highway with dirt on both sides — a far cry from the traffic nightmare it is today.
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