The Portneuf Greenway Foundation, founded in 1993, has taken upon itself the task of spearheading the reclamation of the Portneuf River for the people of Pocatello, through a string of parks and paths. Whether the concrete channel can be molded into something approaching the greenways of Boise, Idaho Falls, Blackfoot and other cities is a difficult issue. In any event, the building of the Greenway will enhance real estate values, recreational opportunities, and quality of life in Pocatello.
A major positive step for the Portneuf greenway was announced in June 1996 when the J.R. Simplot Co. purchased the Swanson Ranch on the north end of Pocatello. The Simplot Co. plans to leave the river in its natural state and construct trails along it.
Memorial Building, on the west bank of the Portneuf River at Fremont Street.
The Memorial Building was built in recognition of World War I veterans
and dedicated on May 30, 1926. Alex Mathers, Pocatello contractor, was
the largest individual contributor to the building cost. Note the piled
up rip-rap on the west bank of the river, consisting of boulders of basalt,
carried by the Lake Bonneville Flood. The Memorial Building is one of
the few Pocatello public meeting halls where alcohol can be served. The
open-air porch on the second floor has been closed in and the concrete
Portneuf River flood control channel has replaced the wall of boulders.
(center) Portneuf River flood control channel and storm drain, after a summer thundershower, looking south from the Memorial Building, (July, 1991).
(right) Portneuf River flood channel looking west at (l to R) Clark to Wyeth Streets. Memorial Building is in center of view. Idaho Power dam site was at the intersection of Wyeth and the river, (March, 1991).