Author Topic: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing  (Read 24915 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« on: July 08, 2008, 05:00:00 AM »
Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing



Some believe additional parking may be the answer to the Jacksonville Landing's woes, but history suggests that the center's ability to draw in national tenants will not be completely solved by a parking garage.  Here are several things that, if implemented, may improve the Landing's viability.

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/content/view/836

tpot

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2008, 07:20:49 AM »
This whole argument about their not being any parking downtown is BS.  I live in SPR and go downtown all the time.  I have always found a spot to park not more than a block or two from where I am going.

The Landing is dated and a new parking garage is not going to turn this place around.

fsujax

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2008, 07:55:45 AM »
I do agree the Landing is dated and needs some major renovations. The parking issue will always be an issue for someone coming from the burbs.  For those of us who live in the core, we know that there is plenty of parking, just poor signage.

copperfiend

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2008, 08:22:57 AM »
I agree that the parking situation is an issue for somebody coming from the suburbs. I also think there is parking available that people do not utilize. However, the parking signage is so poor that people would not even know it is available. I was in Baltimore last year and was amazed at the parking signage around the inner harbor.

Doctor_K

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2008, 08:38:38 AM »
However, the parking signage is so poor that people would not even know it is available.
Isn't there/wasn't there some law or code on the books that basically forbade any kind of advertising and/or other signage downtown?  Is that still a contributing factor to the fact that once 'burb dwellers get downtown they struggle to figure out where they're going, how to get there, and where to park?
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create."  -- Albert Einstein

thelakelander

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2008, 08:40:03 AM »
Downtown does have a ton of parking, its just unmarked.  However, in the Landing's case, they believe they need a certain number of dedicated spaces to attract national chains that demand dedicated parking.  This would basically mean taking a garage somewhere and dedicating all of its parking spaces to the Landing, as opposed to having general public parking or leasing a certain amount of spaces to nearby offices, etc.  The closest city owned public parking garage is the Water Street garage, but its separated from the Landing by a few blocks of surface parking, making the walk between the two structures undesirable.  A solution to this problem could be a streetcar line down Water from the Prime Osborn to the Hyatt.  While the streetcar line would bring other benefits, it would also directly tie in several garages and parking lots with the Landing, Omni, TU Center, Hyatt and the Convention Center, thus enabling them to take advantage of what's already in place.  However, I don't see people here seriously thinking outside of the box and moving forward with something before Sleiman's garage goes vertical.
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thelakelander

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2008, 08:41:44 AM »
However, the parking signage is so poor that people would not even know it is available.
Isn't there/wasn't there some law or code on the books that basically forbade any kind of advertising and/or other signage downtown?  Is that still a contributing factor to the fact that once 'burb dwellers get downtown they struggle to figure out where they're going, how to get there, and where to park?

The downtown signage ordinance has been revised, so signs are allowed.  We probably need to edit it again to make garage and parking lot owners put up uniform signage indicating where short term public parking spaces are available.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

Lunican

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2008, 08:44:49 AM »
I wonder how much a starter streetcar line on Water Street would cost compared to a new parking garage?

Doctor_K

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2008, 08:47:14 AM »
Quote
The downtown signage ordinance has been revised, so signs are allowed.  We probably need to edit it again to make garage and parking lot owners put up uniform signage indicating where short term public parking spaces are available.
Thanks for the clarification!

Does the task of 'editing it again' fall to the city legislators?  Would they be able to (figuratively speaking) slap an ordinance down outlining the what's, where's, and how's on that?  Or would it be something more involving like including the various merchants' organizations in on such discussions?
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create."  -- Albert Einstein

thelakelander

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2008, 08:57:02 AM »
It should be something the city can do by enforcing the Downtown Master Plan the taxpayers paid for eight years ago, under the Delaney Administration.  However, I would expect anything that would cost the private sector additional money would be best being debated in the open and involving merchants and the parking industry.
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thelakelander

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2008, 09:05:29 AM »
I wonder how much a starter streetcar line on Water Street would cost compared to a new parking garage?

It would be cheaper to construct a starter streetcar line.  Water Street is approximately one mile.  They could easily lay track and catenary in the street for less than $10 million.  On the other hand, the new 1,385 space, courthouse garage cost $26 million.

http://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/showstory.php?Story_id=41913&text=parking%20garage

Quote
What Does It Cost?

We will take a detailed look at costs in our three case studies, which make up the next section of this paper. In general, the answer to the question, “What does it cost?,” is the same answer J.P. Morgan gave when a reporter asked him, “Mr. Morgan, what is the stock market going to do?” The great financier replied, “It will fluctuate.”

Costs of streetcar lines vary widely, because the characteristics of streetcar lines vary widely. In fact, it can be difficult to obtain the construction cost of a streetcar line, because building the line is often part of a larger project that includes other elements.

San Francisco’s new F line provides a good example. This is a double-track streetcar line, built to Light Rail standards, which now carries almost 20,000 people per day (all in Vintage cars, we would note). The construction cost was about $30 million per mile, which is high even for Light Rail. But much of that money went for visual enhancements that have nothing to do with running streetcars, including extensive use of granite and marble and even planting palm trees along the right-of-way. A city that wanted just the streetcar line without the Carmen Miranda-style décor could build it for substantially less.

At the other end of the scale is the excellent and highly innovative two-mile streetcar line recently opened in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The total cost was just $4 million, or $2 million per mile, including five restored PCC streetcars.

Some other examples include:

Portland, Oregon, the only line using modern streetcars. The 4.6 mile loop line was constructed for $12.4 million per mile, including seven new streetcars, built in the Czech Republic.

Tampa, Florida, a 2.3 mile line built for $13.7 million per mile including eight Heritage streetcars. The cars themselves, replicas of 1920’s Birney streetcars, cost $600,000 each (compared to up to $3 million for a modern Light Rail Vehicle).

Little Rock, Arkansas, a 2.1 mile line built for $7.1 million per mile, including three streetcars.

San Pedro, California, a 1.5 mile line that recreates the old Pacific Electric “Red Cars” for $4 million per mile, including three streetcars, one Vintage and two Heritage.

full article: www.heritagetrolley.org/artcileBringBackStreetcars7.htm
« Last Edit: July 08, 2008, 09:16:05 AM by thelakelander »
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ormolu611

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2008, 10:35:52 AM »
Well, I for one am in complete agreement that a parking garage is not going to do anything at all for the Landing. Parking is not the issue here . . . the isssue is that the landing is, well, completely unsatifying. It is perched on the river in what should be an excellent location, but it is not integrated with downtown at all. Walking by the place, there is nothing on the street side to give you any particular desire to go inside and check it out. It is as if the front of the place is facing the river and the landing effectively has its "back" turned towards downtown. I think the place should have "two fronts." The earlier idea of splitting the place and having Laura continue to the river (a pedestrian only version) would help. As it is right now, the place is too small, claustrophobic, and partitioned to be anything worth building more parking for. I mean its ridiculous - all downtown has is parking! It's everywhere! People just are loathe to walk a couple of blocks. I swear downtown has more parking garages than any other type of building in the area, and street parking galore.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2008, 01:50:32 PM by ormolu611 »

KenFSU

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2008, 10:53:25 AM »
What ever became of the plan to chop out the front end of the landing and open up the water to the street?

BridgeTroll

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2008, 10:59:26 AM »

Another thing that the Landing could do would be to convert the totally unused bottom to a seafood/ farmers market that combined the beaver street action with seafood a la Pikes Place Market in Seattle.

In Pikes Place, the shops and store keepers come and go just as rapidly as they do in the Landing (well at least the 'go' part) but the Seafood Market stays the same.



I love Pikes Place... You can spend an entire day wandering the shops, watching the street performers... Ahhh Seattle...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

vicupstate

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Re: Breathing Life back into the Jacksonville Landing
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2008, 11:07:26 AM »
Sleiman buying the Landing has been a lifesaver.  If Rouse still owned it, it would probably be shuttered by now.

That said, I think he is 'waiting out' Peyton's term, so he can try to buy the land underneath.  I just don't think he is going to invest the 'big money' until he owns the dirt too.  Frankly, I don't blame him.  Opening up the cener to Laura Street is a no-brainer, that the city should be working with him to accomplish.  It would result in a loss of leaseable space (temporarily at least), but he has plenty to spare now.

Sleiman's reluctance to sign a 'Staples/Office max' type tenant is understandable in one sense, it doesn't fit the long-term goal. But I would like to see a short-term (2-3 years) lease given to one.  Anything is better than vacant space, and it would provide a service for both the office workers and the DT residential population (albeit a small population currently). 

I also like Stephen's idea about a Farmer/Seafood market.  Open up the center through to Laura Street, and set up a Saturday and Sunday market on the patio areas if nothing else.             

The dated look and significant vacancies would be an embarrassment in any other city, but in inferiority-complex Jacksonville, it is just accepted.  As the T-U article quoted the Landing official, probably 85% of Jax visitors go there sooner or later.  My guess is that was probably true for many years, but it probably is a lot lower than that now. 

If you had out of town visitors staying with you, would you take them to SJTC or the Landing?         
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