Downtown Development Projects

Development has slowed in Downtown Missoula compared to post-pandemic years but there are still some newly opened treasures for Missoulians to discover. Toward the bottom, there are multiple links providing a full rundown of business, transportation, and housing activities in the Missoula Downtown area. The following highlights a few of the latest additions and improvements to the Downtown Community in the past year.

Business Activity
  • 2023 Food and Beverage Additions: Start your morning off right at Morning Birds Bakery newly opened on Broadway across from the courthouse. After work, sit yourself at the bar or lounge in the Miami art deco furnishings fashioned throughout Très Bonne on the corner of Higgins and Front Street. Whiz Kid is also now slinging the best Philly Cheese Steaks this side of the Mississippi inside Locals.
  • New Retail: Missoula women can enjoy a new boutique clothing store in HO+KO to impress any onlooker with the latest styles in women’s fashion. Feeling Italiano? Tosca Fine Oils, on Main Street, imports some of the finest olive and balsamic oils from Italy and beyond. Offering exquisite furniture and home goods to the Missoula community, Lewisia Home has also opened on North Higgins.
  • Keeping Missoula weird and lit, three new dispensaries have opened their doors downtown in 2023; Big Sky Buds, Great Northern Pharmacy, and Marimint on the corner of Higgins and 3rd Street.
Transportation Improvements
  • The Beartracks Bridge was completed in 2023! Thank something, huh? The over two year project included a brand new widened deck to add width to the sidewalks and bike lanes. The repair of the steel superstructure, powder coating luminaries, and steel railings between motor vehicles and pedestrians/bicyclists were also included in the work completed. Originally constructed in 1962, the Bridge was in dire straits, or rather dire need, of repair.
  • Russell Street Bridge ($29 million): Construction, completed in 2020, replaced the existing two-lane bridge with a new five-lane structure, raised bicycle lanes, and widened sidewalks.
  • Van Buren Street Interchange ($10.5 million): The new interchange, completed in 2018, incorporates roundabouts at the Van Buren Street intersections immediately north and south of Interstate 90. Orange Street Interchange was completed in 2017 adding roundabouts at the on and off ramps for Interstate 90.
Future Development
  • $25 Million RAISE Grant awarded to the City of Missoula to implement the Safety & Mobility Plan on Higgins, Front and Main Streets. The plan will address traffic concerns south of Broadway on Higgins Avenue along with the conversion of Front and Main Streets to two-way traffic. The plan is slated to start implementation in 2025 and further includes ADA access from the Beartracks Bridge down into Bess Reed and Caras Park, trail widening along the Clark Fork River, gateways at Ryman and Pattee Street and signal optimization throughout.
Past Economic Reports