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Biz Buzz: New development project in Rigby getting mixed reactions from community

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A development in Boise is the inspiration for a similar project in Rigby across from the high school. | Courtesy Jorelle McClellan

Do you want to know what’s happening in the eastern Idaho business scene? We’ve got you covered. Here is a rundown of this week’s business news across the valley.

BIZ BRIEF

RIGBY

New commercial and residential development moving forward in Rigby

The proposed plan for Farmington Station in Rigby. | Courtesy Jorelle McClellan

RIGBY – A development project in Rigby is moving forward.

Andrew and Jorelle McClellan with Silvercreek Realty Group partnered with Hailey-based developers Triumph Group to buy a 32-acre parcel of land on State Highway 48 across from Rigby High School. The name of the project is Farmington Station and will include a mix of multi-family and single-family homes on the back 10 acres, with commercial property occupying the rest of the space.

“There will be a huge multi-family complex in the middle with a pool, splash pad and a park. It will have meandering paths,” Jorelle tells EastIdahoNews.com. “We’re trying to get a movie theater in there, restaurants, franchises and a ‘live-eat-work-entertain-play (area).'”

Jorelle says they’re several months away from finalizing a deal for the movie theater. The other tenants will be determined as the project gets underway. A groundbreaking ceremony is slated for this spring, and Jorelle anticipates the project happening in phases over the next five years.

Word of the project has started to spread throughout the community, and Jorelle says it has been met with mixed reactions. In a public hearing last month, the Jefferson Star reported people living near the development were opposed to the project. Their main concern was an increase in traffic accidents due to a potential influx of people.

“Everybody else is saying, ‘We need this, our tax base needs this, our bedroom community needs the commerce.’ The city is excited about it,” says Jorelle.

The City Council voted unanimously to approve the project, according to the Jefferson Star.

Jorelle became interested in the property last year after seeing it listed for sale. She had heard someone wanted to put in storage units, but she wanted to do something that would attract people to Rigby.

She spoke with some investors in Boise and was inspired by a development that was happening there. (A photo of that development is at the top of this story.)

“I went out there, met with them and looked at their project and then came back to Rigby and said, ‘This is where we need to do this.’ I called them back and gave them the pitch of my life. They got on board, came out to see it and loved it,” Jorelle says.

The first phase of the project will get underway once the ground is broken. Jorelle says she is excited to help shape future growth in the city and watch how it unfolds.

“We’re in talks right now with a few companies we’re trying to get in there,” says Jorelle. “What I really want is local people who own local businesses (to fill as much of the commercial space as possible) … then, if necessary, do a strip mall and go after some franchises.”

RELATED | After more than 2 years on the market, old restaurant building has a new owner

The McClellans bought the old Me’n Stans building in October 2019 from the previous owner. Renovations on the building came to a halt at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The couple recently sold the building to the Rigby Urban Renewal Agency, which Jorelle says will sell once renovations are complete.

BIZ BITS

Local hospital announces changes to board of directors and presents service award

BLACKFOOT – Bingham Memorial Hospital, a member of Bingham Healthcare, would like to announce that at its board meeting on Monday, Jan. 25, R. Scott Reese was sworn in as the newest board member by the Chairman of the Board Gary Baumgartner. In addition, Dean Jones and Karalee Krehbiel joined Bingham’s Member Board.

Bingham Memorial is governed by two boards: The Member Board and the Board of Directors. The Member Board is the overarching board that governs the hospital’s 501(c)3, which requires a representative from every incorporated city in the county. Its chief responsibility is to appoint members to the Board of Directors.

Also, Jones, who had been serving on the Board of Directors, was presented with a plaque for his six years of loyal service to that board.

Idaho Falls committee seeking public input on business and economic climate

IDAHO FALLS – The Business and Economic Climate CUSP Committee of Idaho Falls has created and released the second round of a survey gathering data regarding the local workforce for the benefit of the city of Idaho Falls. The committee is seeking the driving, motivating and decision-making factors behind the workforce age groups that businesses are looking to hire, train and retain; what brings them to Idaho Falls, and why they stay or leave. This survey was initially created in partnership with students from the Research Business Development Center of Brigham Young University-Idaho and distributed via social media channels at the conclusion of 2020. The committee is reopening the survey for distribution via alternative channels to seek as wide a distribution and response rate as possible. This survey seeks to identify from the perspective of our younger workforce:

  • The perception of availability of sufficient education.
  • The employment prospects they perceive they may have locally in the long and shorter terms.
  • How long they have been employed here and plan to continue to be.
  • What outside factors may have influenced their decision to stay in or move to Idaho Falls, or
    conversely, consider moving away from Idaho Falls.

To participate in the survey, please click here before Feb 12. Responses collected are anonymous and may be used in aggregate for strategic planning purposes for the city.

RELATED | City of Idaho Falls wants your input on housing, education and other topics in new online survey

Local barbershop hosting grand opening celebration

RIGBY – The Rigby Chamber of Commerce and Country Cowlicks Beauty and Barbershop in Rigby is inviting you to its grand opening celebration. It’s happening Saturday, Jan. 30 at 4 p.m. Ten dollar haircuts will be offered from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

RELATED | Local 21-year-old woman opens up beauty and barbershop in Rigby

Maverik donates $150,000 to food banks throughout Intermountain West

Video provided by Maverik
maverik feeding america

Courtesy Maverik

POCATELLO – Maverik — Adventure’s First Stop will help support people affected by the COVID-19 pandemic through two initiatives with Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization. The first is a $150,000 donation to the organization, followed by Maverik’s “Round Up the Change for Feeding America” program, which invites customers to round up their transaction to the nearest dollar to help fight hunger and benefit the Feeding America network of food banks. Maverik’s initial donation will be distributed to six Feeding America member food banks across the Intermountain West in communities where Maverik operates. The remaining funds will be focused on Feeding America’s COVID-19 Response Fund. Local food banks that will receive a direct donation of $22,500 include:

  • Roadrunner Food Bank (Albuquerque)
  • Idaho Food Bank (Boise)
  • Three Square Food Bank (Las Vegas)
  • Food Bank of Northern Nevada (Reno)
  • Second Harvest Inland Northwest (Spokane)
  • Food Bank of the Rockies (serving people throughout Wyoming)

Understanding we are all fighting this battle together, Maverik is inviting guests to participate in its “Round Up the Change for Feeding America” campaign that runs from Jan. 26 through Feb. 28. The program rolls out at all Maverik stores in 11 states. Click here for more information.

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If you have a Biz Buzz item you want to share, send it to rett@eastidahonews.com. Remember to use “Biz Buzz” in the subject line. Also, don’t forget to sign up for the free Biz Buzz email newsletter.

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