Author Topic: The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks  (Read 4923 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« on: March 05, 2013, 10:33:01 AM »
The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks



With the proposed reconstruction of the Southbank Riverwalk scheduled this year, it's time to revisit the history behind downtown Jacksonville's riverwalks.

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2013-mar-the-history-of-downtown-jacksonvilles-riverwalks

simms3

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2013, 11:23:31 AM »
One of the best articles I have read on this site.  I think the whole situation/mentality of an entire city controlled by a very small inept few comes through in the city's availability of public space and its priority of spending money on public space.  All those studies are lip service.

The riverfront?  Aside from 2 miles of usable riverfront sidewalk, most is private and the remaining space (Shipyards, JEA land on Southbank) is reserved to be developed privately.  All the great cities in America I can think of are "public" cities where you don't feel like you're trespassing wherever you walk and you get the sense that the city cares about showcasing its best attributes to the public instead of reserving them for people who can pay for them.

In Jax, look at public space...Riverwalk?  Lame currently.  Hemming Plaza?  Lame and used by homeless so it needs to be "shut down".  Emerald Necklace north of DT?  What's that?  Other parks?  Do we have to maintain them?

You want river view/access?  Buy a million dollar house or happen to work on the 30th floor of an office building!  I admire Noone's perseverance to highlight lack of waterfront access for the public.
Bothering locals and trolling boards since 2005

tlemans

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2013, 12:25:49 PM »
Is it possible to get these plans back on the table or are we still dealing with the preservationist today?

Spence

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2013, 02:03:38 PM »
I don't think I would call Friendship fountain and park, or the current Riverwalks "lame", simms3, I am more of the mind that we can be thankful we have these outdoor spaces along with Hemming as they are now. Including Treaty Oak.
Could they be better? Sure.Absolutely!
but they could also not exist.
How sad that would be!

And yes I definitely agree, Noone IS a stalwart and needs all the like minded warm bodies we can find to rally around him!

We have a lot of work to do here in Jax and need all the positivity we can muster!

From reading your posts, I  appreciate your fact finding, intellect, wit, and occasional sarcasm.  I suppose I may be more of an optimist.

Thank you for keeping us sharp! 
Why is the world full of humans a lot less friendly than we ought to be?

coredumped

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2013, 02:25:40 PM »
Friendship park/fountain is very vibrant. If you're curious, head out there at 9 or 10pm on a Friday. The place is filled with tourists/lovebirds, etc.

The southbank river walk is in serious need of repairs. The boards are coming up, some are loose or falling a part. It's difficult to walk it at night since it's hard to see which boards are in good enough shape to step on.
Jags season ticket holder.

Keith-N-Jax

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2013, 03:05:31 PM »
Great article, would be nice if those plans were brought back to life. Imagine the riverfront then.

tufsu1

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Re: The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2013, 03:23:42 PM »
The southbank river walk is in serious need of repairs. The boards are coming up, some are loose or falling a part. It's difficult to walk it at night since it's hard to see which boards are in good enough shape to step on.

which is why the reconstruction project is happening...should be underway by summer

spuwho

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2013, 04:57:30 PM »
I am trying to figure out how the preservation of the Jacksonville Terminal interfered with the development of the Riverfront? Because it moved the convention activity from the city center to essentially the LaVilla brownfield?

After reading this, we have the most ADHD way of executing any of the civic plans. It's no wonder the DDA mass resigned. They spent how many years pulling this together just to get derailed by a preservation effort? Sounds lame to me. Didn't the DDA do any grass roots support work? Or did they just plan in a vacuum from the public and try to force it?

Can someone tell the DIA to stick to their guns and not go ADHD over some special interest? Can we collectively finish one project we plan? Please?

How hard can it be to publicly review your work and solicit/sell/vet your efforts?
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 05:03:15 PM by spuwho »

Tacachale

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Re: The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2013, 05:22:54 PM »
Goes to show you our problems with leadership. When we have strong leaders in office, things get done. When we have less effective leaders, the don't. Unfortunately our system is set up so that good leaders are term limited out at just the point their plans are coming to fruition, and the next folks can totally derail it all while they're learning the ropes.

And say what you will about the Prime Osborne and the preservationists, but the reason the city bought it was to save the building. It was never a good location for a convention center but it's still standing.
Do you believe that when the blue jay or another bird sings and the body is trembling, that is a signal that people are coming or something important is about to happen?

Noone

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2013, 04:38:02 AM »
Simms3 thanks for the kind words. This past weekend with the opening of RAM and the Community First food truck event in the parking lot next to Berkman has showcased to the administration that access to the land and the river is a winning combination.

The current history of Jacksonville's Riverwalks is being rewritten right now. The very first time I met Mayor Brown was after he addressed the city council for the first time and in the lobby as he was walking to the elevators Dave Roman was with him I mentioned to Mayor Brown about River access Downtown and he turned to Dave and told me to get together with this man.

On Monday I contacted Dave Roman with the administration. Dave, is the man. We had a great conversation. One of the best. Going forward the no trespassing signs may be replaced with the welcome signs in the form of another Mayor Brown Kayak Logo. Mayor Brown had said that more announcements would be coming and I believe him. Dave is working hard on other spots as well.

Downtown is becoming a Destination and not a pass through.

johnny_simpatico

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2013, 11:28:33 AM »
Interesting item on improved riverfronts elsewhere. Jacksonville unfortunately is largely standing still. The city could have been thinking big when it redid Friendship Fountain Park and created something along the lines of the spectacular vision of the original park -- or recreated it!
http://blog.archpaper.com/wordpress/archives/55680
No mention of Brooklyn Bridge Park along the East River.
http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/visit

BrooklynSouth

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2013, 12:53:47 PM »
Great article. I like the suggestion at the end to expand on what already works by adding on to the Times-Union Center. Organic growth is often cheaper and easier, it just requires someone with the vision or experience to see where a small change could have a big impact. Personally, I keep trying to visit all the local restaurants and festivals near the river and encouraging them to keep at it. Big things are happening in pre-consolidation Jacksonville (Riverside, downtown, etc.). The feel is already much more vibrant than when I moved here 3.5 years ago.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2013, 12:57:27 PM by BrooklynSouth »
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Noone

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Re: The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2013, 07:45:15 AM »
Jacksonville Waterways Commission meeting and on the agenda is the Southbank Riverwalk.

wordofmouse

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Re: The History of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2013, 07:55:43 AM »
Maintain and improve. If we designate a riverWALK that is what it should be, not a bike path for racing bikes, or a fishing pier, or a homeless rest pit. Obtaining grants and ribbon cutting is only part of the process, if left to stand on its own it will fall into disrepair and use by those who will use and abuse the improvements financed by the tax payer.

We had a master plan as shown, but, other pressing issues (removing tolls, getting ride of air stink, park land expansions (Guana, and others) needed to be addressed. Get a new plan or reinstitute the original, but, stick to it and not change it for political grand standing for any current leadership groups.

If we could have preserved our proud past, and pasted it along,  we would not be constantly searching for a new identity ever 10yrs. 

InnerCityPressure

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Re: The history of Downtown Jacksonville's Riverwalks
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2013, 07:01:13 PM »
Did you guys read some of the ideas in these studies?  We should do some of those ideas in these studies.  Man.  We really should.  :o

Seriously, though, is there a good reason we don't have an aquarium here?  I feel like there is not much to keep that from being an instant success on the riverfront.  Do we just lack the investors?  Is it that simple?  The zoo seems to have a very steady flow of patrons.  It seems that market would also translate to an aquarium.  Obvious comparison is Baltimore...It would change everything.