Monday, July 14, 2014

Daniel's Creek easement provides opportunity for trail connections from Polecat Gulch to the Boise Front

A new 12.6-mile trail easement linking Polecat Gulch Reserve to the Boise Front will provide long-awaited trail connectivity from Northwest Boise to the Shafer Butte trail system at Bogus Basin. 

A proposal for the easement was approved July 15 by the Boise City Council.

The easement provides a 12-foot recreational pathway through property owned by Daniel’s Creek Land LLC, which is a subsidiary of Grossman Company Properties. Daniel’s Creek covers 3,284 acres and is the largest contiguous private land holding in the Boise Foothills. The property extends from Cartwright Road adjacent to Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land in Polecat Gulch Reserve to U. S. Forest Service (USFS) and BLM property near the Boise Ridge. Most of the acreage lies west of Bogus Basin Road.

“The new trail easement provide links to some of the city's most loved open space areas such as Polecat Gulch Reserve and Stack Rock Reserve,” said Mayor David H. Bieter. “We are grateful to the Grossman family for their commitment to improving recreational opportunities and the health of our community.”

Grossman Company Properties, with offices in Boise and Phoenix, is a multi-generational, family-owned real estate developer, owner and manager. Sam Grossman, the company’s founder, first moved to Idaho in the early 1960’s and has maintained personal and professional ties to the local area ever since. In the early 1990’s, the company founded Hidden Springs in Northwest Boise, and is also the developer and owner of Eagle River, a 91-acre mixed-use business park in Eagle.

“The greatest gift my father and mother gave our family was moving us to Idaho at a very young age,” said John Grossman. “And with that move came a strong and undying respect for the beauty and vastness of Idaho’s rural lands.  As avid outdoorsmen and long-term land owners, it has been a great honor to work closely with the City of Boise to establish a trail easement across our Daniel’s Creek land for the benefit of local Idahoans while preserving our land use rights.”

The easement is provided free to the city in perpetuity.

The Daniel’s Creek trail easement is the most recent accomplishment in conservation efforts resulting from the $10 million serial levy passed by voters in 2001. To date, the serial levy has helped to preserve more than 12,000 acres of undeveloped property as public open space through acquisition, donation, conservation and recreational easement, or land exchange. With approximately $1.8 million remaining in the fund, efforts will continue to focus on protecting critical habitat, riparian corridors, rare plants, historic sites, and potential trail connections from east to west across the Boise Front.

As specified in an easement agreement with Daniel’s Creek LLC, trails would be open for walking, hiking, jogging, bicycling, horseback riding, bird watching and nature study. Motorized mobility devices used by people with disabilities and emergency vehicles would also be allowed.

Written consent of the owners would be required for recreational vehicles such as snowmobiles, runs or competitive races, programs by schools, clubs and other uses.

Ridge to Rivers staff members will work with the BLM and USFS on possible trail alignments across federal land to city-owned open space reserves. This successful multi-agency collaboration provides seamless public land management for thousands of trail users.