Author Topic: Retail garage project proposed for downtown  (Read 13574 times)

ronchamblin

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #30 on: January 23, 2018, 08:41:19 AM »
Looks good.  However, I'm disappointed that the only retail is on Laura.  Seems that we are limiting somewhat, vitality to Laura, which might be okay for now simply because of little retail investment on the horizon.  But how about ten years down the road? Would be nice to have an infrastructure shaped to accommodate a spread to the east of Laura.  The long walk along the concrete walled parking garage down both Forsyth and Bay is unfortunate. 

Also, I wonder about the feasibility of having on top of the garage ... something like some apartments // retail // restaurants?  Seems such a waste to have a block sized area not utilized to the max in a creative way.  Of course, the design is set I presume.

Overall however, I'm so glad to see all the building activity ... and the proposed.  And all this is going on while Mayor Curry is at the helm of the city.  He seems to have done great on most items, and there have been no horrendous scandals involving him.  I've not been following things extremely close, but even so, for a first political office run, he seems quite up to it.  Onward.

As Lake has mentioned, and as I've mentioned in earlier posts ... a focus on sound infrastructure is critical ... avoiding the hoopla junk, which has only temporary impact ... is of utmost importance.  A strong focus on increasing residential in the core is the way to go, as this will tender multiple advantages in the quest for true core vibrancy. 

 


jaxnyc79

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #31 on: January 23, 2018, 09:48:30 AM »
I wish there was a focus on corridors and foot traffic.  I'm afraid that not enough people involved in revitalizing downtown actually do a lot of walking. 

Choose a corridor, i.e. Bay Street or Laura Street or Main Street, whichever, and then walk the length of that corridor on a daily basis to figure out ideas: Would a newcomer to Jax or a visitor downtown find this walk pleasurable?  Are there new things to see like sculptures or waterfalls or lighted storefronts, or am I walking along a wall?  Is there protection from a summer sun or a pop-up thunderstorm?  Does it feel safe and transparent at nightfall?

Choose a corridor, and let's focus the efforts there with the primary objective of generating foot traffic.  Then use sensors to measure that foot traffic to hopefully observe improvements over time. 

thelakelander

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KenFSU

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #33 on: January 30, 2018, 11:34:47 PM »
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The plans for the parking garage have changed since City Council approved legislation last year pledging millions of dollars in city support for renovation of the historic buildings and the parking garage.

Instead of having 550 parking spaces and 12,000 square feet of retail, the garage will have 696 parking spaces and about 4,900 square feet of retail.

So City Council approved the funding of the garage last year with the understanding that it would have 12,000 square feet of retail. Suddenly 60 percent of the square footage for retail is cut, and the DDRB just shrugs their shoulders?

jaxnyc79

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #34 on: January 30, 2018, 11:48:33 PM »
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The plans for the parking garage have changed since City Council approved legislation last year pledging millions of dollars in city support for renovation of the historic buildings and the parking garage.

Instead of having 550 parking spaces and 12,000 square feet of retail, the garage will have 696 parking spaces and about 4,900 square feet of retail.

So City Council approved the funding of the garage last year with the understanding that it would have 12,000 square feet of retail. Suddenly 60 percent of the square footage for retail is cut, and the DDRB just shrugs their shoulders?

I’m confused by all of this.  For starters, why would the city allow an entire block on one side of the street along Forsyth to turn into dead space as a garage?  Second, the DDRB must still approve the final design, so might we see changes to this proposal?  Three, why is Greg Anderson “trusting the panel to do the right thing?”  Seems lazy.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2018, 08:53:07 AM by jaxnyc79 »

vicupstate

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #35 on: January 31, 2018, 08:03:50 AM »
Very disappointing. Fascade is 1960's retro ugly. No excuse for a reduction in retail space. Scrap it and start over. That block of Forsyth Street will be a guaranteed dead zone.

THIS is exactly why you need an independent group to advocate for DT.   If the city 'got it' it wouldn't be so necessary. But they don't.
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RatTownRyan

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #36 on: January 31, 2018, 08:50:35 AM »
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The city’s design requirements for the central part of downtown’s Northbank say new parking garages should be built with ground-floor retail or commercial space along at least 50 percent of the building’s street frontage. That policy is aimed at preventing parking garages from being dead zones.

KenFSU

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #37 on: January 31, 2018, 09:33:49 AM »
Fixed it for you.

Quote
The city’s design requirements for the central part of downtown’s Northbank say new parking garages should be built with give momentary thought to ground-floor retail or commercial space along at least 50 percent of the building’s street frontage, but if it's too much trouble, don't worry about it. We can try again next century.

Lostwave

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #38 on: January 31, 2018, 09:51:31 AM »
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“If you put a pin in the center of downtown, these buildings are it,” Gordon said. “There has always been this gap of energy right here in the middle, and filling that is going to be very transformative.”

This gap of energy that we have now, we are going to ensure it will be there forever by building a parking garage.  This is exactly what is wrong with downtown.  Build the garage yes.  But make it 7 floors, with first floor retail or commercial.  The southside of the garage is a perfect place for a ramp up to P1 on the second level.  The site is plenty big enough that you could even fit the ramps and some parking on the first floor if you wanted along with some vibrant retail along all 3 streets.

Why would we purposely add another block like this: https://www.google.com/maps/@30.3261285,-81.6575735,3a,75y,331.52h,81.17t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sbXisyz7re3ERYwid-ib9Ug!2e0!7i13312!8i6656


thelakelander

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #39 on: January 31, 2018, 10:40:13 AM »
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The city’s design requirements for the central part of downtown’s Northbank say new parking garages should be built with ground-floor retail or commercial space along at least 50 percent of the building’s street frontage. That policy is aimed at preventing parking garages from being dead zones.

Many hit the city hard on changing its design requirements.  Actually, in downtown they're pretty decent. We just don't follow them. Hopefully, at a minimum, the structure can be designed to allow more retail when the market is there to support it. This simply involves locating the ramps in a spot that gives sufficient ground level height and depth for future retail along Forsyth Street. The Carling garage on Monroe Street is an example of this. This should be doable without killing the budget.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2018, 10:42:19 AM by thelakelander »
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FlaBoy

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #40 on: January 31, 2018, 11:14:03 AM »
I actually was more optimistic with that considering that they were actually talking about the lack of retail like it is a problem. I really would like to see retail on Main St and Forsyth in the least. 100% believe with all this development, something will be in space as visible as Main and Forsyth.

jaxnyc79

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #41 on: January 31, 2018, 12:12:16 PM »
Do the people responsible for revitalizing downtown Jax actually know “Jax By Foot?”  Do they walk its sidewalks and its curbsides and assess every single detail and detractor making up the pedestrian experience? 

Tacachale

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #42 on: January 31, 2018, 12:39:26 PM »
Do the people responsible for revitalizing downtown Jax actually know “Jax By Foot?”  Do they walk its sidewalks and its curbsides and assess every single detail and detractor making up the pedestrian experience?

Part of the problem is that even the people who take the initiative to improve downtown don't really "get" a lot of this stuff. It's yet another factor of there being too few people living downtown for it to really work as a neighborhood.
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?

jaxnyc79

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #43 on: January 31, 2018, 02:13:19 PM »
Do the people responsible for revitalizing downtown Jax actually know “Jax By Foot?”  Do they walk its sidewalks and its curbsides and assess every single detail and detractor making up the pedestrian experience?

Part of the problem is that even the people who take the initiative to improve downtown don't really "get" a lot of this stuff. It's yet another factor of there being too few people living downtown for it to really work as a neighborhood.

Well, on the one hand, it’s tragic that the city would invest so much in the Trio restoration, only to have it face a garage along Forsyth.  On the other hand, I can understand the fear that restaurants and retail can’t just rely on hotel guests, and will need people ex-downtown to come into the core and provide patronage.  And the only way people move about in Jax is by car.  So Downtown planners are in this odd position of trying to make Downtown patronage by car as seamless and as easy as it is in Mandarin.

thelakelander

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Re: Retail garage project proposed for downtown
« Reply #44 on: January 31, 2018, 02:20:54 PM »
There's nothing odd about being within a three block radius of most of downtown's daytime workforce. The retail that was torn down for the current parking lot did well and food trucks that use the space now appear to do okay. Designing that garage for no chance of accommodating future additional retail would a bad long term move.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali