Suburban Jacksonville: Argyle

August 31, 2010 13 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Metro Jacksonville explores one of the city's newest and largest neighborhoods on the Westside: Argyle

Argyle History

1994 aerial of Argyle

Argyle dates back to 1975, when Gulfstream Land Development put forward a 25-year plan for building houses, apartments, stores and office complexes. It was one of the first "developments of regional impact" in Florida to get approval from state regulators.

The development never took off the way Gulfstream expected, and when the company ran into financial woes, it abandoned the project. The fallout resulted in the property splitting up into the hands of multiple landowners.

AFI Associates controls 5,606 acres in Jacksonville and Clay County. Ranch Village Group has 1,215 acres in Clay County. Chimney Lakes Investment Co., whose president is Wirt Beard Jr., owns 1,201 acres.

In 1992, Jacksonville put a building moratorium on Argyle because Gulfstream had not widened Argyle Forest Boulevard.

The new landowners would overcome that by paying up to $13.6 million over 15 years for widening Argyle Forest Boulevard. They also would extend Argyle Forest Boulevard so it connects with Branan Field-Chaffee.

The long-range plan calls for Argyle Forest Boulevard to be four lanes wide, except for a six-lane segment from Old Middleburg Road to Branan Field-Chaffee Road.

The Argyle landowners also would donate right of way for Old Middleburg Road and a proposed Cecil Connector, which would run between Branan Field-Chaffee and Cecil Field.
Source: Road link offers `gateway' to Argyle developers
The Florida Times-Union - Friday, June 4, 1999
Author: David Bauerlein, Times-Union staff writer

2010 aerial of Argyle

The Villages of Argyle Plan

The Villages of Argyle plan encompasses 8,022 acres, including 4,900 acres in Clay, and envisions the construction of nearly 10,000 new homes in six separate "villages," 3,500 apartments and five new schools by 2014.

The 15-year plan, which will be reviewed by the Clay County Planning Commission on Sept. 7, also includes land designated for 3.6 million square feet of light industrial development, 3 million square feet of commercial space and 950,000 square feet of professional offices.

In addition to increasing local job opportunities, developers have agreed to pay for up to $13.6 million in road improvements over the next 15 years, including the extension of Argyle Forest Boulevard westerly to the planned Branan Field-Chaffee Road corridor.
Source: Argyle development reworked Plan includes more businesses, industry
The Florida Times-Union - Saturday, September 4, 1999
Author: R. Michael Anderson, staff writer

Argyle Village Shopping Center is located at the SW corner of Blanding Blvd. and I-295.  This 305,000 square foot center is anchored by major retailers including Publix, Michaels, T.J. Maxx, JoAnn's Fabrics, Babies R' Us, and Bed Bath & Beyond.  According to their website, 65,325 people with an average household income of $65,706 live within a three-mile radius of the shopping center.

Chimney Lakes Elementary School

Argyle Forest Blvd.

Oakleaf Town Center

At 750,000 square feet, Oakleaf Town Center is Argyle's largest retail center.  Located at the intersection of Argyle Forest Blvd. and Old Middleburg Road and anchored by SuperTarget, Home Depot and Kohl's, Oakleaf includes a small walkable "town center" retail area at its main entrance.  According to their website, the population within a 10-mile radius of the center has increased by 91,844 residents since the 2000 Census.

A boom for the road construction industry

Blanding Blvd. looking north towards its intersection with Argyle Forest Blvd.  Despite hundreds of millions spent on road projects to alleviate traffic along Blanding, congestion continues to get worse as new roads attract more sprawling development to the area.

Over the last decade, hundreds of millions in road building projects have been financed by local taxpayers to fuel Argyle's growth.  Here is a brief look at some of the projects completed, underway or proposed to help increase automobile capacity in and around Argyle.


Branan Field-Chaffee Road (Blanding to 103rd)
A new two-lane road to spur development in Clay County and Jacksonville's Westside and relieve Blanding Blvd. traffic congestion.
Cost: $16.9 million


Argyle Forest Blvd. Phase I (Blanding to Westport)*
A road widening project to increase congested Argyle Forest from 2 to 4-lanes.
Cost: $22 million


Argyle Forest Blvd. Phase II (Westport to Bridgecreek)*
A road widening project to increase congested Argyle Forest from 2 to 4-lanes.
Cost: $13.2 million


Cecil Commerce Parkway (I-10 to 103rd)
A new road that will one day become a part of the Outer Beltway.
Cost: $62 million


Collins Road Extension

Collins Road Phase 2 (Rampart to Blanding)*
Reconstruct to a four-lane section with bike lanes, sidewalks and curb & gutter on both sides.
Budget: $25.2 million

Collins Road Extension (Shindler to Old Middleburg)*
Construct a new, two-lane section with curbs, gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes on both sides.   This section will eventually be widened to a four-lane divided roadway with landscaped median(s).
Budget: $9.2 million


Parramore Road (above) will be expanded to accommodate the development of two large strip shopping centers.

Collins Road (Blanding to Pine Verde)*
Reconstruct to a four-lane section with medians, bike lanes, sidewalks and curb & gutter on both sides.
Budget: $14.1 million

Collins Road (Rampart to Shindler)*
Reconstruct to a four-lane section with landscaped median(s), bike lanes, sidewalks and curb & gutter on both sides.
Budget: $20.5 million

Old Middleburg Road (103rd to Argyle Forest)*
Reconstruct to a four-lane divided section with landscaped median(s), bike lanes, sidewalks and curb & gutter on both sides.
Budget: $29.3 million

Shindler Drive Phase 2 (Collins to 103rd)*
Widen and resurface two-lane roadway to include paved shoulders, drainage improvements and sidewalks.
Budget: $18.7 million

Parramore Road Extension (to Youngerman Circle)*
Developer Thomas Dumas would help fund the construction a new, four-lane roadway between Collins Rd. and Youngerman Circle for the right to construct 435,000 square feet of retail space.
Budget: $6.8 million

Interstate 295 at Collins Road Interchange
This project will include a new I-295 interchange at Collins Road, the construction of a collector-distributor road system, capacity improvements for the Blanding Boulevard northbound on-ramp to I-295 southbound and the resurfacing of Blanding Boulevard from Clay County line to Collins Road.
Budget: $98.6 million

* - Funded pay local taxpayers through Better Jacksonville Plan


Shindler Drive Phase 1 (Argyle Forest to Collins)

This limited list of road projects adds up to a whopping capital cost of $336.5 million to better serve one rapidly growing section of town.  The next time someone claims that mass transit is too expensive or does not pay for itself, it might not be a bad idea to remind them of the real bull in the china shop.

Argyle is located in Jacksonville between Blanding Blvd. and Branan Field-Chaffee Road along the Duval/Clay County border.

Article by Ennis Davis