Idaho State Capitol Historic Preservation, Restoration, and Rehabilitation

Boise, Idaho

After a century of use, deferred maintenance, and countless modifications that eroded the historical character of the building, the restoration of the Idaho State Capitol building brought the 250,000 sf building back to its former grandeur by preserving and restoring the historical elements and materials of the building, and rehabilitating the spaces for contemporary uses. In addition, two new, 25,000 sf underground wings were added that complement the original building while providing additional public meeting and office space for the legislators with minimal changes to the overall appearance of the Capitol from the street.

As the largest non-highway public works endeavor in state history, the project stabilized the condition of the building (exterior, interior, and site work) and upgraded all building systems and infrastructure, especially addressing life safety and accessibility.

Two new, five-story staircases and elevator towers were incorporated within the existing building footprint at the northwest and northeast corners to provide emergency egress and allow for better building access. The former dark-and-dreary basement was transformed into a light-filled space that now serves as the primary public entrance and visitor center for the Capitol.

Non-original materials were removed, and all remaining surfaces of the historic capitol were preserved and painstakingly restored. The building was modernized with contemporary office building functions, while preserving the historic integrity of “The Capitol of Light” the original architects imagined.

American Institute of Architects (AIA) Idaho Chapter—Award of Merit in Architecture
American Institute of Architects (AIA) Northwest and Pacific Region—Merit Award—Historical Preservation
City of Boise, Planning & Development Services—Building Excellence Award—Best Fire-Life Safety Upgrade
Idaho Historic Preservation Council—Orchid Award—Exemplary completion—single largest historical renovation/addition in Idaho
Idaho Smart Growth—Grow Smart Award—D.L. Evans Bank Redevelopment Award

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