North Idaho Fact Checking. Clearing the Clean Air.

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Here are some notable items to check off the list of curiosities if you’ve never visited North Idaho:

Boise, ID is just a short drive away, right? We have friends there – maybe we could visit you both.

The shortest distance between Boise and Coeur d’Alene is 378 miles. The shortest distance between Los Angeles and San Francisco is 381.9 miles. You would likely not want to try to trial your first Uber ride with either of those routes – even if you have a promo code.

Are there potatoes everywhere?

Of the 300,000 acres of potato farmland in Idaho – we would be hard pressed to find a potato farm in North Idaho. In fact, pretty sure there aren’t any.

Click here for Potato Fun Facts if you’re that personality type:

Got Water?

Yes! Fresh water. Lake water. River water. Yummy water. Lots of water. Not to make light of other region’s drought conditions – North Idaho is flush with water. North Idaho is the beneficiary of a climate with moderate (sometimes light, sometimes heavy) seasonal snowfall, large lakes and unexploited rivers. Getting outdoors to enjoy lake and river life is what this area is all about!

What about jobs?

Working on it, but we need YOUR help! Although fresh start-ups like Innovation Collective being led by visionary founder Nick Smoot are looking to jumpstart the North Idaho tech scene with community events, an accelerator program and annual Robotics & AI conference – more high-skill jobs are needed to truly invigorate the future here. With relatively quick access to Spokane International Airport (GEG) and direct flights to major cities – working remotely here in North Idaho should be more than just a remote possibility.

Jobs+ website, the economic development corporation of Coeur d’Alene led by Gynii Abracosa Gilliam and Jame Davis and funded in a large-part by local corporations – showcases a 2012 CNN report (Money Magazine) in which Idaho was ranked:

#1 in regulatory friendliness,
#1 state for small business,
#1 for the friendliest tax code
Less than 1/2 of California’s utility costs
Top 10 in economic health of small business
Low workers compensation
Significant tax incentives
The 6th lowest cost of living in the U.S.
Lowest cost of living index in the western United States

Even with all the job growth favorability – the area needs more entrepreneurs to take risks here on North Idaho soil. There is a growing base of tech-savvy kids coming out of STEM programs at the North Idaho STEM Charter Academy as well as early learning opportunities like Gizmo, the brainchild of Marty and Barb Mueller, “a non-profit makerspace where art, design, technology and tools are connected by the hands and minds of the people of this community.” The talent pipeline is growing – a solid first step in bringing new ideas and concepts to the surface.

How is North Idaho planning for the Future?

Although a small community – people here are teaming up and investing in planning for the future. CDA 2030 formed originally in 2000 as CDA 2020 is “an independent, non-partisan, non-aligned effort with one overriding goal – a bright future for greater Coeur d’Alene.” With a Community Master Plan – Coeur d’Alene is benefiting from collaboration and a strong sense of both community and empowerment as people invest in Our Town.

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Raniel