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TWIN FALLS — Twin Falls residents and visitors can soon expect a new Chinese restaurant, a Marriott hotel, a Hobby Lobby and a lot more multifamily housing.

As commercial building remains strong, Twin Falls Building Official Jarrod Bordi expects multifamily housing to pick up substantially this year, similar to where it was in 2005 and 2006. In May, the city issued one permit for a fourplex development on Elizabeth Boulevard, with four more pending approval.

“I think that’s going to be a really big trend this year,” Bordi said.

He’s expecting to issue 25 fourplex permits and seven duplex permits this year.

The first phase of five fourplexes on Elizabeth Boulevard should be complete by Thanksgiving, developer Gerald Martens said. The strong housing market has made rentals the more affordable option for many families, Martens said.

“Interest rates on single-family (homes) have increased, and it makes rentals more desirable because fewer people qualify to buy,” Martens said.

He expects to build another four or five fourplexes next year — the full development will have 14 fourplexes when complete. All have three-bedroom units and will be leased at market rate.

Martens is also the property manager of a new commercial development adjacent to CapEd Credit Union on Cheney Drive West. In May, the owners of the property received a permit for a $781,000 five-tenant building. The only tenant Martens could announce so far was Hong Kong Restaurant — a dine-in Chinese restaurant.

“The target is to open the five businesses on or before Dec. 1,” Martens said.

Another tenant of the building will have a drive-through. Construction has already begun, and more tenants will be announced soon.

Some other commercial projects that received permits in May:

Hobby Lobby

  • got a permit for a $1.4 million remodel — which covers 61,000 square-feet of the Magic Valley Mall that formerly housed Macy’s. “It’s pretty extensive,” Bordi said. An exact opening date has not been announced.

TownePlace Suites by Marriot

  • got a permit for a $7.7 million, four-story, 108-unit hotel near the Fairfield Inn & Suites.


  • got a permit for a $75,000 improvement for office space at 201 Canyon Crest Drive.

Coram Deo Coffee

  • got a permit for a $1,500 remodeling to open up a wall between two spaces at 979 Washington St. S. near Swensen’s Market.

City of Twin Falls Parks and Recreation

  • got a permit to erect 30-foot by-48-foot shade shelters at the First Federal Park, for a value of $146,000.

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