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The Missoula Redevelopment Agency’s Board of Commissioners voted on Thursday to extend a key deadline for the developers who are planning a $150 million redevelopment project at the Hotel Fox/Riverfront Triangle site.

A group of private developers are planning on working with the city to build a 39,000-square-foot conference center, a 200-room hotel, two floors of below-grade parking, retail stores such as a grocery market, restaurants, entertainment space, offices, housing a public plaza and a park.

The plans call for a public/private partnership in which the city would sell land to the developers, and vice-versa, and then the city would buy a portion of the conference center and the entire 295-space parking garage once the developers build it.

Both the city and the developers have agreed they need an extra 90 days to sign a Master Development Agreement between the two parties because it is such a complex project. The development will take place in the triangle area roughly encompassed by Broadway, Orange Street and the Clark Fork River in downtown Missoula. Right now, the site is occupied by medical office buildings and decaying parking facilities.

Also on Thursday, the MRA board also voted to hire WGM Group and pay up to $91,406 to complete a preliminary design for redeveloping a portion of California Street.

The California Street redesign has been in the works for quite some time. Because the portion of the street from Third Street West to Dakota Street is within Urban Renewal District II, the purpose of the project is to “complete the vision for the reconstruction with an approved design which has broad stakeholder support and provides a blueprint for future reconstruction of the street or construction of right-of-way improvements related to incremental development.”

Tod Gass, the MRA’s senior project coordinator, said the proposal submitted by WGM Group incorporates public outreach and stakeholder input to develop multiple design alternatives, the selection of a preferred alternative, an in-depth analysis and retracement of the right-of-way, developing a 70 percent design for the reconstructed street. Also, WGM group has experience developing the current design of another portion of the street north of Dakota Street.

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