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Urban Construction Update - June 2013

A brief look at the status of various projects under construction in and around Downtown Jacksonville during the month of June 2013.

Published June 28, 2013 in Development      31 Comments    Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article


feature

Downtown

Workspaces, Inc.

Workspaces, Inc. is investing $200,000 in the buildout of a 5,500-square-foot storefront at 121 West Forsyth Street.  Based out of Orlando, Workspaces, Inc. is an office furniture dealer.





Yates Parking Garage Murals

Murals are being added to the Yates Parking Garage on East Adams Street as a part of the Cultural Council and the Art in Public Places Committee's launch of the Spark District.  The murals are being painted simultaneously by Northeast Florida artists Felici Asteniza, Joey Fillastre and Sean Mahan.







The Volstead

115 West Adams will be transformed into downtown's latest bar, The Volstead. The Volstead will be an "upscale bourbon bar with a 1920s theme".





Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce

The $3.4 million renovation of the Chamber of Commerce building and property continues.









Might As Well Cafe

The Might As Well Cafe will be opening in this street level retail space at 410 Broad Street.  The restaurant will serve French-inspired fare and gourmet sandwiches.





605 New Center Hotel

LaVilla's long closed New Center Hotel at 605 North Broad Street is being renovated by nearby Clara White Mission into office and housing space.






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31 Comments

Noone

June 28, 2013, 05:59:47 AM
Thanks for the update. What is going on with MOCA? Replacing all the windows on the one level? What is the cost for this change?

fieldafm

June 28, 2013, 06:27:48 AM
An electronic cigarette place is going into the old Clothing Wharehouse.  Hawkers is going in across the street from that, taking over three storefronts(Downtown Divas and the old jewelry store).  Hawthorn Salon will also be expanding into the old Subculture space (she moved to the old Body Central location inside the Landing). 

Grassroots Market is also putting in outdoor seating. 

Bill Hoff

June 28, 2013, 07:00:25 AM
The plans for Hawkers are very cool.

One thing missed in SPR - the infill housing on E. 5th Street is nearing completion.

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 08:01:11 AM
Thanks fieldafm. I've updated the article with the mentioned corrections in Five Points.  Bill, where exactly is the infill housing on East 5th?  How many units?

JeffreyS

June 28, 2013, 08:32:30 AM
Love the parking garage murals.

avonjax

June 28, 2013, 09:08:52 AM
How could the city of Jacksonville have allowed that horrific Family Dollar store be built. The city is littered with that disgusting design and it ruins every site it sits on. I think it is by FAR the worst design of any national chain. I despise their buildings. And now State street is littered with one. HORRIBLE!

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 09:44:37 AM

A Family Dollar in Charleston, SC. Same box, different outcome.

While horrible, I would not blame Family Dollar or McDonald's.  They are only building what we want them to build, according to our zoning regulations.

We tried to promote a better designed project for that site but it falls within no man's land.  That stretch of State doesn't fall within downtown's official borders or Springfield's.  It's "The Space Inbetween", which means Jax's suburban zoning regulations have design precedence over everything being built there. 

Downtown Jacksonville's Family Dollar below


Sidewalk to Hogans Creek and the dog park.


Skyline view from Hogans Creek.


Front of building. Notice the difference between these three images and the Charleston example?



I-10east

June 28, 2013, 09:53:29 AM
I wonder what are the cost comparisons between those two Family Dollars. I agree that the Charleston design would look better on State, but I can imagine with the nice brick design etc, that it costs more, how much more I dunno.

mbwright

June 28, 2013, 10:16:39 AM
I think like many companies, they will do the minimum required.  When Jax have a low standard, that is what we get.  It is pretty stupid to have a no man's land area, it should be downtown, or Springfield.  Not sure what it would take to get this corrected.  Just like the Dollar General that replace the historic Standard Feed buildings.

PeeJayEss

June 28, 2013, 10:23:05 AM
That one mural looks like the EAC, dude. Both look cool. Now they should cover the rest of the garage with art.

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 10:23:40 AM
I wonder what are the cost comparisons between those two Family Dollars. I agree that the Charleston design would look better on State, but I can imagine with the nice brick design etc, that it costs more, how much more I dunno.

I wouldn't get too caught up on the decorative building material. Block can be just as attractive as a fake brick facade. The key is site plan that respects the urban footprint and integrates with the desired context of the communities surrounding it.

In this case, shift this same box up against the State/Newnan street edge, along with the parking to the rear, and you've created a better overall environmental situation without spending one penny more.

duvaldude08

June 28, 2013, 10:39:29 AM
Off subject, but kinda on subject, I remember awhile back some developers claimed they were purchasing empty lots in Springfield to build new historic looking homes on them. What ever happen with that? I'll research and find the old article so yall wont think Im crazy LOL

Bridges

June 28, 2013, 10:46:46 AM
We tried to promote a better designed project for that site but it falls within no man's land.  That stretch of State doesn't fall within downtown's official borders or Springfield's.  It's "The Space Inbetween", which means Jax's suburban zoning regulations have design precedence over everything being built there. 

I always thought it would be a good idea to extend the DDRB to the block north of State.  To Orange St., which would cover just that area, since it links Springfield and DT. 

But after seeing some of the recent approved designs by DDRB (i.e. Fuqua), I got to say, what would be the point?  Would have almost certainly ended up with the same layout.

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 10:47:37 AM
Duvaldude08, I think the guys you are talking about are now focusing on Riverside...

Quote
Infill housing development under way in Riverside

New construction is breaking ground in one of Jacksonville’s historic neighborhoods.
Springfield Builders is building seven new homes in Riverside along Lydia and Downing streets, one block from the King Street entertainment district.....

....Davis had been building similar homes — new construction, but built to look historic — on infill sites in Springfield. He’s sold everything he built there, but said the Riverside deal was a much more attractive prospect.

“We love Springfield, but it doesn’t have the critical mass that Riverside-Avondale does,” he said. “King Street alone, it seems like a new restaurant opens every couple of months. There’s so much forward momentum I don’t see any way that’s going to reverse itself.”

http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2013/05/31/infill-housing-development-under-way.html

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 10:49:44 AM
We tried to promote a better designed project for that site but it falls within no man's land.  That stretch of State doesn't fall within downtown's official borders or Springfield's.  It's "The Space Inbetween", which means Jax's suburban zoning regulations have design precedence over everything being built there. 

I always thought it would be a good idea to extend the DDRB to the block north of State.  To Orange St., which would cover just that area, since it links Springfield and DT. 

But after seeing some of the recent approved designs by DDRB (i.e. Fuqua), I got to say, what would be the point?  Would have almost certainly ended up with the same layout.

I feel the same way.  I'm hoping the DIA will end up being the backbone that the DDRB lacks.

duvaldude08

June 28, 2013, 10:51:34 AM
I wonder what are the cost comparisons between those two Family Dollars. I agree that the Charleston design would look better on State, but I can imagine with the nice brick design etc, that it costs more, how much more I dunno.

I wouldn't get too caught up on the decorative building material. Block can be just as attractive as a fake brick facade. The key is site plan that respects the urban footprint and integrates with the desired context of the communities surrounding it.

In this case, shift this same box up against the State/Newnan street edge, along with the parking to the rear, and you've created a better overall environmental situation without spending one penny more.

I agree. I said the same thing when I went to Mcdonalds the other day and got a good look at the building. As you stated, if you pushed it up the street edge and put the parking in the back, it would have been fine. But with it being set back so far, it doesnt look right. But the actual design is okay.

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 10:58:00 AM
Speaking of Family Dollar, little Ypsilanti, MI gets it.  Just came across this article regarding a proposed Family Dollar in that town.  It has a few quotes that we should keep fresh in our minds when poorly designed projects pop up on our radar screen.

Quote
Ypsilanti to decide on delayed $1.2M Family Dollar purchase agreement in May

Ypsilanti will decide in May whether to move forward with the proposed $1.2 million Family Dollar development on Water Street. However, the purchase agreement may include several changes that Family Dollar's developer, Core Resources, will have to consider.

Quote
Potential changes to the site plan include:

- A 10-foot sidewalk required on Michigan Avenue and Park Street. The current requirement is closer to five feet.
- Parsons to be stubbed to allow for curb cut. No curb cut will be on Park Street.
- Changes to parking configuration that may include it being moved to the back of the property.
- Street trees along all street frontages.
- Built zero to five feet from sidewalk.

As part of the Shape Ypsilanti master plan process, the entire 38-acre Water Street property was looked at for ways to possibly connect it better with the rest of the city and lure more potential developers.

Quote
Carter Good, an Ypsilanti resident, urged council to make sure the Family Dollar development isn't rushed and has all of the city's desired elements. Good referred to comments made by master plan consultant Ian Lockwood, who said the city shouldn't compromise its values by having a "beggars mentality" in order to secure development on the property.

"A valuable Water Street and the commuter train that's coming, will all contribute to the value of the city," Good said. "I think we should value what we have in our city and not be beggars."

http://annarbor.com/news/ypsilanti/ypsilanti-to-decide-on-delayed-12m-family-dollar-purchase-agreement-in-may/?cmpid=mlive-@dt-river

Bill Hoff

June 28, 2013, 11:10:42 AM
Bill, where exactly is the infill housing on East 5th?  How many units?

00 block of E. 5th. One single family house w/ garage.

Bill Hoff

June 28, 2013, 11:14:45 AM
Duvaldude08, I think the guys you are talking about are now focusing on Riverside...

Quote
Infill housing development under way in Riverside

New construction is breaking ground in one of Jacksonville’s historic neighborhoods.
Springfield Builders is building seven new homes in Riverside along Lydia and Downing streets, one block from the King Street entertainment district.....

....Davis had been building similar homes — new construction, but built to look historic — on infill sites in Springfield. He’s sold everything he built there, but said the Riverside deal was a much more attractive prospect.

“We love Springfield, but it doesn’t have the critical mass that Riverside-Avondale does,” he said. “King Street alone, it seems like a new restaurant opens every couple of months. There’s so much forward momentum I don’t see any way that’s going to reverse itself.”

http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2013/05/31/infill-housing-development-under-way.html

I think he's referring to Low Country Classics,  which purchased many empty lots. The new house on E. 5th is theirs, almost done.

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 11:18:12 AM
Btw, who's building the houses on Liberty Street?

simms3

June 28, 2013, 11:36:17 AM
Is that subterranean excavation going on at Goozlepipe and Guttyworks?

I like the garage murals...a little bang for the buck in terms of "facade" treatment.

And Low Country Classics claims "new construction, but built to look historic".  Can we get off of this shit?  If you love the pictures below, why?  Stuff looks cheap and botches historic detailing and historic construction quality...if they can't justify the $$$ it takes to properly recreate historic designs, they should sell minimal contemporary housing to fit the times and the young people they are probably trying to attract in that area (WTF "young" person wants to live in an "old" home anyway unless it's a cool old home?)

http://lowcountrydesignbuild.com/gallery.html

thelakelander

June 28, 2013, 11:42:53 AM
Is that subterranean excavation going on at Goozlepipe and Guttyworks?

Yes, it will have a basement.

duvaldude08

June 28, 2013, 11:42:58 AM
Duvaldude08, I think the guys you are talking about are now focusing on Riverside...

Quote
Infill housing development under way in Riverside

New construction is breaking ground in one of Jacksonville’s historic neighborhoods.
Springfield Builders is building seven new homes in Riverside along Lydia and Downing streets, one block from the King Street entertainment district.....

....Davis had been building similar homes — new construction, but built to look historic — on infill sites in Springfield. He’s sold everything he built there, but said the Riverside deal was a much more attractive prospect.

“We love Springfield, but it doesn’t have the critical mass that Riverside-Avondale does,” he said. “King Street alone, it seems like a new restaurant opens every couple of months. There’s so much forward momentum I don’t see any way that’s going to reverse itself.”

http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2013/05/31/infill-housing-development-under-way.html

I think he's referring to Low Country Classics,  which purchased many empty lots. The new house on E. 5th is theirs, almost done.

Thanks!! Ive been wondering if they were moving forward. With so many houses being torn down, it would be nice to see some go up

urbaknight

June 28, 2013, 03:42:30 PM
I went into (don't know if I'm spelling it right) Magnificat Cafe a little while ago. I talked to the guy at the counter. The owner is in France or something, Anyway. I suggested that they apply for some of that Laura st beautification grant money to finally paint something on that ugly dead-looking billboard above their restaurant. I said it could at least say "Welcome to Hemming Plaza" He thought it was a good idea and to come back in a week or so to tell the owner himself. And with all of the murals going up everywhere else (including the art above Chamberlin's just two doors down) Why not that blank billboard as well.

fsujax

June 28, 2013, 04:02:50 PM
It did have something on it during One Spark.

urbaknight

June 28, 2013, 04:10:57 PM
I think it had vote, followed by some number. I was exited to see it. When deprived it doesn't take much to make someone happy.

JFman00

June 28, 2013, 04:39:29 PM
Speaking of Family Dollar, little Ypsilanti, MI gets it.  Just came across this article regarding a proposed Family Dollar in that town.  It has a few quotes that we should keep fresh in our minds when poorly designed projects pop up on our radar screen.

Quote
Ypsilanti to decide on delayed $1.2M Family Dollar purchase agreement in May

Ypsilanti will decide in May whether to move forward with the proposed $1.2 million Family Dollar development on Water Street. However, the purchase agreement may include several changes that Family Dollar's developer, Core Resources, will have to consider.

Quote
Potential changes to the site plan include:

- A 10-foot sidewalk required on Michigan Avenue and Park Street. The current requirement is closer to five feet.
- Parsons to be stubbed to allow for curb cut. No curb cut will be on Park Street.
- Changes to parking configuration that may include it being moved to the back of the property.
- Street trees along all street frontages.
- Built zero to five feet from sidewalk.

As part of the Shape Ypsilanti master plan process, the entire 38-acre Water Street property was looked at for ways to possibly connect it better with the rest of the city and lure more potential developers.

Quote
Carter Good, an Ypsilanti resident, urged council to make sure the Family Dollar development isn't rushed and has all of the city's desired elements. Good referred to comments made by master plan consultant Ian Lockwood, who said the city shouldn't compromise its values by having a "beggars mentality" in order to secure development on the property.

"A valuable Water Street and the commuter train that's coming, will all contribute to the value of the city," Good said. "I think we should value what we have in our city and not be beggars."

http://annarbor.com/news/ypsilanti/ypsilanti-to-decide-on-delayed-12m-family-dollar-purchase-agreement-in-may/?cmpid=mlive-@dt-river

My brother lives in Ypsilanti and can tell you that this is absolutely not the kind of city government you would want Jacksonville to have. He is one of a literal handful (I believe 3) of downtown property owners who actually lives on his property (vast majority of buildings downtown are mixed-use). Ypsilanti has a case of big project-itis where they have been chasing a deal for this large parcel while otherwise neglecting the downtown. They also have a historical commission that is the embodiment of the "We Love Avondale"/Springfield mentality that would prefer buildings to be demolished/collapse/burn down, than go through adaptive reuse or be rehabbed.

He and his wife, after having spent several hundred thousand dollars on their property, and attempting to spend hundreds of thousands more on another historic building in the town, now intend to move where the city government will not actively oppose plans that would indisputably be of net benefit to the public.

Like the Shipyards site here, a number of small business owners asked the city to split up the large parcel that the Family Dollar will be built on for development but the city refused, holding out for what they hoped would be a home run. Family Dollar is what they're getting.

fieldafm

June 28, 2013, 08:08:38 PM
I went into (don't know if I'm spelling it right) Magnificat Cafe a little while ago. I talked to the guy at the counter. The owner is in France or something, Anyway. I suggested that they apply for some of that Laura st beautification grant money to finally paint something on that ugly dead-looking billboard above their restaurant. I said it could at least say "Welcome to Hemming Plaza" He thought it was a good idea and to come back in a week or so to tell the owner himself. And with all of the murals going up everywhere else (including the art above Chamberlin's just two doors down) Why not that blank billboard as well.

That billboard is lost in legal limbo due to the City's sign ordinance, unfortunately. 

As are even smaller things like A-frame menu signs downtown. 

Pretty awesome rules, right? 

tufsu1

June 29, 2013, 09:45:07 AM
The San Marco Indochine space is open now...or at least the bar is

As for Family Dollar, heck there's a nicer brick store in Lehigh Acres, Florida....think about that....Lehigh Acres...wow!

Ocklawaha

June 30, 2013, 12:09:42 AM
RE: San Marco Train Station Project, this site NEVER was a train station of any sort. The 'South Jacksonville' railroad station was located just north of Landon on the east side of the tracks. Today a junk yard and JEA occupy the old railroad line. The railroad to the beach branched off from about the center of the JEA plant at the mainline and followed the north side of Landon crossing Kings and following what is today BEACH all the way to JAX Beach and Mayport. This was cut back during the depression to serve just South Jacksonville to Spring Glen, the last little segment along Landon west of 95, came up around 1970. The South Jacksonville Municipal Railways may have used the 'San Marco Train Station Property' as a car barn, but there is no evidence of such inside the historic buildings, nor have any photos surfaced.

thelakelander

June 30, 2013, 07:05:22 AM
^The South Jacksonville Municipal Railways never used that site as a car barn.  That's only speculation as far as I can tell.
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