While still a territory, Idaho Territorial Legislature officially incorporated the Boise City Canal Company on March 8, 1869. This was about 20 years before Idaho achieved statehood.
Over the time since then Boise has grown and the Canal has grown with it along with various early attempts for construction water courses including – Grove Street Ditch, Walling Ditch, Boise Valley Water Ditch and Perrault Ditch. The Canal has served various purposes including irrigation of orchards, city drainage, ponds at Julia Davis Park, CW Moore Park and other essential functions. As the city grew the canal was covered in the downtown area beginning 1949 for both safety concerns and to enable more land use.
The Canal continues to evolve along with the City and particularly the North End. It has moved from irrigation and agriculture to urban and suburban uses including providing water to golf courses, parks, schools, sub-division and, of course, houses throughout the neighborhoods of Boise. The Canal has grown from a beginning of six miles of ditch and eight miles of laterals to some twelve miles of main canal and twenty miles of laterals. The future of the Canal system may include more water features, pathways adjacent to the Canal, increasing the local users through individual properties or pressurized irrigation systems. Water in the Treasure Valley will become a scarcer resource in the next 100 years and the Boise City Canal Company will play a major role in the efficient application of water to the population’s needs.
For an abridged history of the Boise City Canal Company, you may download the report below.
The Capital City Development Corporation (CCDC) is planning for a transformation of Old Boise and includes daylighting the Boise City Canal in its plans. Read the Phase I report.
A Boise State student did some research on Capital to Grove, 3rd to Myrtle 1900-1950 for an Urban Environmental History class. View their research.
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Availability: water is usually delivered April 15 through October 15.