Innovative Electrical Solutions LLC – an electrical contractor – has leased a new complex in Hayden where it plans to consolidate its operations, which are currently distributed across multiple office and warehousing spaces in Kootenai County. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Kootenai County Commissioners voted 2-1 to change the county building permit system to allow residential builders to opt-out of acquiring permits. The opt-out provision will apply only to buildings in unincorporated areas. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Demolition has begun on the former Wild Waters waterpark. The park has been closed since 2010, but the demolition of the park and the leveling of the lot will finally allow the property to be placed on the market. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Prairie West Crossing developers formally unveiled their proposal for a technology park in north Post Falls. The Planning and Zoning Commission held a public hearing on the proposal, which includes multiple zoning and annexation actions on the part of the city. The technology park is designed to attract technology and aerospace manufacturers to Post Falls. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
CDA 2030 has contracted with a Chicago-based consulting firm to conduct a market analysis and feasibility study for a potential performing arts and events center in Coeur d’Alene. The study is being jointly funded by CDA 2030 and the city’s urban renewal agency, Ignite CDA. CDA 2030 is a community-based project created to develop a vision for a bright future for greater Coeur d’Alene. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Coeur d’Alene’s urban renewal agency, Ignite CDA, has proposed creating a new redevelopment district. The proposal specifies a new district of 54 acres in west Coeur d’Alene along the Spokane River. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Construction has begun on a new 47-unit apartment complex in Coeur d’Alene. The rentals, located across the street from the city library, will be marketed to middle- and upper-income tenants. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Construction is underway on a new two story commercial building in Coeur d’Alene’s Riverstone development. The Coeur d’Alene-based Orthopedic Physical Therapy Institute will occupy the ground floor while the second floor remains available for a future tenant. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
In the summer of 2017, thousands of Idaho teens took jobs. But the percentage of teens participating in the labor force remains far below its level in earlier decades. In Idaho, just as nationwide, there’s been a long-term decline in teen participation. Does that decline matter?
Summer jobs in Idaho typically peak in July. In the past four summers, Idaho employers added an average 12,600 jobs between April and July. Only one sector usually decreases employment between April and July – education. Between 2014 and 2017, it lost an average of 8,500 jobs between those months. The sectors that typically add the most summer jobs are leisure and hospitality — restaurants, hotels and recreational facilities; federal agencies — the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management; retail — especially gas stations, convenience stores and specialty stores serving tourists; and wholesale — especially those serving the construction, forestry and agricultural industries.
Many of those jobs are taken by teens. Between the second and third quarters of 2016, the number of 14- to 18-year-olds on Idaho payrolls grew from 18,531 to 26,069, according to the Census Bureau’s Quarterly Workforce Indicators.
Construction has begun on a $7.3 million parking structure in downtown Coeur d’Alene. The 360-space garage is being spearheaded by the city’s urban renewal agency, Ignite CDA, which notes that constrained parking space presents a barrier to the redevelopment of many properties downtown. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
A $6 million medical building is under construction in the Riverstone development in Coeur d’Alene. North Idaho Dermatology will occupy part of the building when it is completed later in 2018. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Kootenai Health has begun a $4.3 million renovation involving at least 17,000 square feet and three departments in its main hospital building in Coeur d’Alene. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
SmaK Plastics – a Vancouver-based manufacturer with a facility in Coeur d’Alene – announced plans to expand its northern Idaho workforce. SmaK currently employs 18 people in its Coeur d’Alene facility, but plans to expand to roughly 40 by the second quarter of 2018. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Several area ski resorts have begun their winter seasons. Lookout Pass opened the first weekend of November, while Silver Mountain and Schweitzer opened Thanksgiving weekend. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Water Solutions Inc. is building an office building with an attached manufacturing space in Rathdrum. The company, which sells drinking water purification units, began as a sole proprietorship in 2001 in Rathdrum and anticipates a workforce expansion commensurate with their growing business and new facilities. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
The city of Hayden issued building permits for a $13.7 million, 96-unit apartment complex. The complex is the first phase in a larger development plan by Coeur d’Alene-based Hayden Village LLC, which will eventually develop 64.4 acres in Hayden. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
The Parks and Recreation Committee in Coeur d’Alene voted to ban offshore businesses in the city’s water corridor on Lake Coeur d’Alene. The decision will affect enterprises like the Hooligan Island jungle gym barge and boats that sell food. The committee sited the danger of motorized boat traffic near the beach, in water that is generally full of kayakers, paddle-boarders and swimmers in the summer. Source: Coeur D’Alene Press
Developers Philip Wirth and Rick Robinson have announced plans to create a 233-acre technology park on Highway 41 in Post Falls. The complex is being designed with technology and aerospace manufactures in mind, and the developers have specifically cited proximity to North Idaho College’s technical schools in Rathdrum as a draw to the location. Source: Coeur D’Alene Press
Alliance Data – citing strong growth in its Card Services division – announced plans to add 140 workers in Kootenai County by the end of 2017. This would raise the total employment at the company’s Coeur d’Alene complex to 750 employees, from 610 currently. A company spokesman said that Alliance anticipates a further expansion to between 800 and 850 employees in 2018. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Viking Construction has begun work on the third and final phase of the Fieldstone Apartments project in Post Falls. This phase will add 64 units to the complex. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
Cascade Team Real Estate – a brokerage based in Issaquah, Washington – announced it plans to open a new office in Coeur d’Alene. Cascade Team focuses on residential real estate and does not provide commercial listings or property management services. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
SPi CRM, a Philippines-based call center, is remodeling the former Sports Authority space in the Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d’Alene to use as a new customer-service call center. SPi’s spokesman noted that the company anticipates total staffing of around 240 employees. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
This article uses from the Idaho Department of Labor’s six regional economists, the Idaho Department of Transportation, CTR and news sources includingCapitol Press, Idaho County Free Press, Idaho Mountain Express, Idaho State Journal, Local News 8, Idaho Statesman, KPVI,Post Register, Los Angeles Times, Spokesman-Review, Teton Valley News, The Atlantic and The Times-News.
The total solar eclipse of 2017 has faded into history, but its effects most likely will be discussed and dissected for some time.
On Monday, Aug. 21, the total solar eclipse occurred along a 70-mile-wide path across the continental United States where the moon completed blocked the sun for about two minutes. In Idaho, the path of totality entered the state from the west at Weiser, passed through the mountainous Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness and continued over Idaho Falls, Rexburg and Teton County.
Before the solar eclipse, southern Idaho communities along the path prepared for unknown numbers of visitors, gearing up to host them at inns, campgrounds and private homes; entice them into stores and restaurants; and protect them from potential problems. Estimates of potential visitors ranged from low to astronomical. No one was sure how many visitors would come, where they would locate and how much money or time they would spend.
A lumber mill in Athol owned by Vaagen Brothers Lumber suffered significant damage in an Aug. 9 fire. Although more than 50 percent of the facility was consumed, none of the mill’s employees were injured. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Post Falls City Council approved a new budget with no increase to property taxes and a fee increase which will affect water and wastewater fees. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
North Idaho College hosted the annual Art on the Green event. The art fair, which featured more than 160 artists, drew an estimated 50,000 patrons in its three-day run from Aug. 4-6. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Sandpoint’s new fiber network has begun expanding to business, including Timberline Helicopters and Tamarack Aerospace. Fatbeam, the fiber provider, cited the projects as examples of how public/private partnerships can work, while Sandpoint city officials noted that the fiber will help companies in need of better connectivity to keep their headquarters in Sandpoint. Source: Bonner County Daily Bee
Northern Idaho witnessed at least 21 reported wildfires in July. While the actions of the forest service and other authorities prevented any of the fires from forcing evacuations or threatening structures, the number of fires was above average for July. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Construction work began on a new commercial complex in Athol, which will eventually include the town’s first grocery store as well as a hardware store, a hotel and additional light industrial and commercial space. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Idaho Transportation Department and North Idaho College are partnering to offer a free three-week heavy equipment operator course, which aims both to fill labor needs in the construction industry and offer career opportunities to veterans, women and minorities. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press