New Avondale Restaurant Proposed: Not Everyone Happy

December 10, 2014 154 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

A 250-seat restaurant is proposed in Avondale that will require the demolition of an existing non-contributing building. Not everyone is happy about it.

It's been a year since Yesterday's closed after nearly 30 years of anchoring the intersection of Park and Dancy Streets. At the time of Yesterday's closing, plans were being made by Fleming Island restaurant Taps Bar & Grill to open in the 8,968-square foot building.

Now there's a new plan for the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission to consider. JPM Avondale LLC intends to replace the non-contributing structure with a new 205-seat restaurant named Southern Kitchen & Spirits.
Designed by Lane Architecture, PA, Southern Kitchen includes 6,706-square feet of interior space with an 1,365-square foot covered patio between the eatery and Orsay. Plans indicate 181 interior seats and 69 covered patio seats.  The covered patio would also include a bar facing Park Street. In addition, a new 39-space parking lot will be constructed behind the brick veneer structure at 3638 Park Street. 20 jobs will be created by the opening of Southern Kitchen & Spirits.

However, not everyone is excited about this business moving to the neighborhood. In a letter to the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Board, Thad Crowe, Palatka's planning director and a nearby property owner, raised concerns about the restaurant's scale.

"In summary, I believe the overlay standards dovetail with the need to limit impacts to that of a neighborhood restaurant, which should not exceed 100 seats. A larger restaurant will have noticeably more impacts in the way of parking, noise, traffic, and bottles-in-the-dumpster noise. There are not sufficient available parking spaces in the vicinity to handle the 30+ cars that would be generated on a good night."

As things currently stand, the report for the Certificate of Appropriateness Application recommendation (Page 495) is to "Approve with conditions".

This project and more are a part of the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission's December 2014 agenda. The meeting will be held at 3:00pm today on the 8th floor of the Ed Ball Building in Conference Room 851.

Article by Ennis Davis, AICP. Contact Ennis at

Next Page: Perspective Renderings of Proposed Restaurant

 1 2 3 NEXT