Author Topic: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed  (Read 8156 times)

thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #30 on: June 14, 2018, 05:03:35 PM »
The waterfront is bigger than the Landing. You could have the Landing and do everything you mention immediately on either side of it for a fraction of the cost. Also we razed the history (the wharfs, docks, seafood markets, warehouses, etc.) 70 years ago. If we preserved it, we could have something as authentic as San Francisco's Embarcadero or Savannah's River Street neither of which are demolishing riverfront sites in their cores for front lawns.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2018, 05:17:31 PM by thelakelander »
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thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #31 on: June 14, 2018, 06:58:29 PM »
This one is pretty clear. The new Landing is Lot J next to the stadium. We're seriously considering hundreds of millions to.....de-densify downtown. Unbelievable...
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MusicMan

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #32 on: June 14, 2018, 06:59:48 PM »
Here's a great idea. Let's spend $242 million dredging silt from the bottom of the river and leave all the other desperately needed projects the City of Jacksonville has on it's agenda alone for another time.  The proliferation of cheaply made foreign goods into this country needs all the help it can get, dammit.

KenFSU

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #33 on: June 14, 2018, 07:45:52 PM »
This one is pretty clear. The new Landing is Lot J next to the stadium. We're seriously considering hundreds of millions to.....de-densify downtown. Unbelievable...

To put this into context, the existing Landing is approximately 600 feet from all of the new development on Laura Street.

A two and a half minute walk from the Barnett.

From the Laura Street Trio to Lot J, it's a 16 block, 29 minute walk.

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Keith-N-Jax

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #34 on: June 14, 2018, 08:55:34 PM »
This one is pretty clear. The new Landing is Lot J next to the stadium. We're seriously considering hundreds of millions to.....de-densify downtown. Unbelievable...

To put this into context, the existing Landing is approximately 600 feet from all of the new development on Laura Street.

A two and a half minute walk from the Barnett.

From the Laura Street Trio to Lot J, it's a 16 block, 29 minute walk.

"The best part about living downtown is being able to walk 30 minutes home from the bars, in the dark, past the prison," said no one ever.





Well if lot J is the new Landing that maybe a good thing right? My only issue is the Landing is the only real show piece downtown along with friendship fountain. What really concerns me is will we still be talking about this 20 years from now.

jaxlongtimer

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #35 on: June 14, 2018, 10:03:26 PM »
I don't agree because I'd argue we can do it now and we don't.  We already have green space we don't use. The space in front of the performing arts center is a big waste right now. It can be improved with demolishing ramps and buildings. We also love to plan in a vacuum. This site isn't on an island. What's the plan for the outer square? East lot, etc. If you want a bigger lawn (even the best urban parks are mixed use now), do something with the East lot...it would be a lot cheaper. Overall it comes off as the same shortsided piecemeal approach to revitalization that most previous administrations have brought to the table since the 1950s.

Give the waterfront back to the people in a fuller and greener way (not just in a way for people to go and spend money in a food court), because the river can sell itself, especially with maintained docks and if Lori Boyer's "Activation Initiative" really takes flight.  Let someone repeat the Landing experiment elsewhere downtown, off the river, ideally in a mixed-use context with retail in the lower levels and residential or hotel above, and with an integration with the streets that the Landing has never had.  Let this hypothetical retail endeavor happen when it makes market sense downtown, especially if there's housing and hotel uses sitting atop it and around it to give it a local market and a nearby source of foot traffic. 

Give the compelling natural landmark back to the people in an accessible way, and build a new retail draw further into downtown and off the immediate waterfront to give any future foot-traffic downtown a bit more depth.  Frankly, I've always hated the fact that Jacksonville built a freaking shopping mall right on the water's edge.  It just manifested to me how much disdain the City of Jacksonville has historically held for its River, or at least for "democratizing" the River's Access for the Public Good where people actually live and cluster.  Unless one crosses a bridge or flies overhead or reads a website, one would hardly know Jax is a River City.   

You're right, the city doesn't do it now, but the city's failures are still no reason to abandon ideals.  I wish Berkman Plaza were waterfront Green Space, and the Jailhouse were Berkman Plaza.  Hopefully you get my drift.

JaxNYC, I agree with your position 1000%!  I would advocate for green space the entire length of both sides of the river.  They are ringing the island of  Manhattan with green and it's what so many other successful and widely admired cities have done all over the world.  There is plenty of land off the river to develop anyone's dreams for other purposes.  Further, if we want more people to live Downtown, we need these green spaces to provide the recreational amenities such residents will demand.  Green spaces along the river, combined with walk-able nearby residential options, will make Downtown a unique living opportunity in Northeast Florida and allow it to be competitive with gated communities and other urban sprawl options.

And, if Jax is to host festivals, another Super Bowl or any other large outdoor community gatherings in the Downtown area, we will need even more of these green spaces.  Maybe not right away, but over the coming decades as our population swells by one, two or more millions.  We need to think long term, not a quick fix project that will not stand the test of time.

As for return on investment, this will pay off.  The surrounding area is going to be premium real estate beyond anything we have now and the increased taxes on that land will give us great returns on the much lower cost of a park than wasting it on lots of infrastructure and incentives for something more intense with lots of risk and of little value to the greater City.  I see this as a major spark for Downtown despite the naysayers on this thread.

I have not been a big fan of Curry's approach to other projects and visions for the Downtown area but this one has me behind him 100%.  I am actually stunned that he supports it.

P.S.  It wouldn't bother me if they also removed the two buildings shown and made it all green space! 8)
« Last Edit: June 14, 2018, 10:08:51 PM by jaxlongtimer »

thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #36 on: June 14, 2018, 10:18:11 PM »
This one is pretty clear. The new Landing is Lot J next to the stadium. We're seriously considering hundreds of millions to.....de-densify downtown. Unbelievable...

To put this into context, the existing Landing is approximately 600 feet from all of the new development on Laura Street.

A two and a half minute walk from the Barnett.

From the Laura Street Trio to Lot J, it's a 16 block, 29 minute walk.

"The best part about living downtown is being able to walk 30 minutes home from the bars, in the dark, past the prison," said no one ever.





Well if lot J is the new Landing that maybe a good thing right? My only issue is the Landing is the only real show piece downtown along with friendship fountain. What really concerns me is will we still be talking about this 20 years from now.

Your concern has more of a chance happening than anything else. What's likely to happen is (A) Sleiman wins the lawsuit or (B) this thing gets tied up enough in court that it outlasts the current administration.
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thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #37 on: June 14, 2018, 10:32:05 PM »
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As for return on investment, this will pay off.  The surrounding area is going to be premium real estate beyond anything we have now and the increased taxes on that land will give us great returns on the much lower cost of a park than wasting it on lots of infrastructure and incentives for something more intense with lots of risk and of little value to the greater City.  I see this as a major spark for Downtown despite the naysayers on this thread.

I can't help but notice that this quote sounds eerily similar to what was being written in papers back in the early 1980s when Rouse was being sold a bill of goods. Everything happening right now, from the Landing to talks of more park space and emerging transit technology, is like a watching a bad sequel. All we need now is someone to suggest we need an aquarium too.
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #38 on: June 14, 2018, 10:46:49 PM »
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As for return on investment, this will pay off.  The surrounding area is going to be premium real estate beyond anything we have now and the increased taxes on that land will give us great returns on the much lower cost of a park than wasting it on lots of infrastructure and incentives for something more intense with lots of risk and of little value to the greater City.  I see this as a major spark for Downtown despite the naysayers on this thread.

I can't help but notice that this quote sounds eerily similar to what was being written in papers back in the early 1980s when Rouse was being sold a bill of goods. Everything happening right now, from the Landing to talks of more park space and emerging transit technology, is like a watching a bad sequel. All we need now is someone to suggest we need an aquarium too.

I would suggest this is different.  This green space is going to promote Downtown living which will feed a much more sustainable amount of foot traffic and economic activity to serve as a baseline for doing business Downtown.  Relying on tourists/outside visitors requires constant reinvention to keep them returning (basically, the entire premise of the Landing) and/or a population to draw upon much greater than what resides in NE Florida now.  Plus, attracting those non-residents requires far better transit options than Jax has committed to (thus the insistence on ever more parking garages) while residences in a walk-able range require almost no such commitments (although better transit needs to come around at some point - the sooner the better!).

Riverside, San Marco and the Beaches all have enough residents to keep things hopping.  The visitors come to see what the residents are raving about  8).  Admittedly, Town Center started in reverse order, but, smartly, developers are now building in higher density living (i.e. mostly apartments) to insure the long term sustainability of the area once the bloom is off the rose and those outsiders migrate to the next "great thing" (maybe Downtown?).

thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #39 on: June 14, 2018, 11:14:23 PM »

I would suggest this is different.  This green space is going to promote Downtown living which will feed a much more sustainable amount of foot traffic and economic activity to serve as a baseline for doing business Downtown.

How do you know? Is this wishful thinking? It's not like we don't already have underutilized green space all over the downtown core. This appears to be a bigger lawn, which is something we already have and don't use well in front of the performing arts center. In addition, the majority of the downtown residential population base doesn't live close by. What's the coordinated plan to cluster complementing development around this site verse any other site in the core?

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Relying on tourists/outside visitors requires constant reinvention to keep them returning (basically, the entire premise of the Landing) and/or a population to draw upon much greater than what resides in NE Florida now.

The festival marketplace concept died nationwide well before 2000. For at least the last 15 years the Landing has been tied up in politics, which has negatively impacted whatever could be done with the site. With current retail and entertainment trends (i.e. food halls, public markets, restaurants, etc.), there are uses the site could be adapted to include. For the sake of downtown Northbank vibrancy, it would be foolish of Jax to drive these types of uses to some place on the fringe like the District or Shipyards. The market isn't strong enough to support multiple first class options. That's why some larger level of coordination needs to take place than continued piecemealing of select sites like this.


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Plus, attracting those non-residents requires far better transit options than Jax has committed to (thus the insistence on ever more parking garages) while residences in a walk-able range require almost no such commitments (although better transit needs to come around at some point - the sooner the better!).

I wouldn't worry about attracting suburbanites. I do agree with treating downtown as a urban neighborhood first. However, if we seriously do that and think about what neighborhood park space needs to be, we'd fund the restoration of Springfield Park (a place with playing fields, lawns, playscapes, jogging trails, basketball courts, dog parks, tennis courts, etc. over this.

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Riverside, San Marco and the Beaches all have enough residents to keep things hopping.  The visitors come to see what the residents are raving about  8).  Admittedly, Town Center started in reverse order, but, smartly, developers are now building in higher density living (i.e. mostly apartments) to insure the long term sustainability of the area once the bloom is off the rose and those outsiders migrate to the next "great thing" (maybe Downtown?).

I also would not worry about Town Center. It's a suburban area. People seeking that type of lifestyle will head to Bartram Park and Durbin Park next before they turn to DT. Simply DT like the core of an urban district that includes the surrounding neighborhoods. Urban neighborhoods don't need front lawns that don't include a mix of uses that breed human scaled interaction. They need good public schools, well maintained parks, reliable transit, walkable streets, supportive retail, etc. You make a viable urban neighborhood that actually works and you'll get the visitors.

When you look at the amount of money we're possibly going to have to shell out (suit, razing buildings, bridges, subsidizing Lot J, The District, etc.) and combine that with the bigger picture, I believe you'll see you can stretch that public dollar a lot more and check off more ROI boxes leaving the Landing right where it is, as opposed to forcing things in based off the build it and they will come approach. Even if we just had to have a "front lawn", why not the parking lot on the other side of Main Street?
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #40 on: June 14, 2018, 11:39:42 PM »

I would suggest this is different.  This green space is going to promote Downtown living which will feed a much more sustainable amount of foot traffic and economic activity to serve as a baseline for doing business Downtown.

How do you know? Is this wishful thinking? It's not like we don't already have underutilized green space all over the downtown core. This appears to be a bigger lawn, which is something we already have and don't use well in front of the performing arts center. In addition, the majority of the downtown residential population base doesn't live close by. What's the coordinated plan to cluster complementing development around this site verse any other site in the core?

My hypothesis about the impact of green space is a lot more reasonable, IMHO, than those that suggest other plans for the Landing property will be the savior of DT.  It is proven all over the world that green spaces in urban venues are catalysts for surrounding development and a must for attracting permanent residents.  As I have noted in other posts, even in the suburban mega developments, developers put out front in their marketing the value of the green spaces they create within their boundaries.  People want healthy outlets and Rummell even promoted this for the District (originally termed "Healthy Town").

The space in front of the T-U center is hardly comparable to this plan.  And, you refer to the absence of residential living close by.  That is exactly my point, its not there now because the green space isn't there.  It's a classic chicken and egg issue.  Build the green space and watch the demand for residential increase.

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However, if we seriously do that and think about what neighborhood park space needs to be, we'd fund the restoration of Springfield Park (a place with playing fields, lawns, playscapes, jogging trails, basketball courts, dog parks, tennis courts, etc. over this.

No argument here.  I have said before, fund this project.  But, it benefits more Springfield.  And, it doesn't showcase our greatest asset, the river.  I would suggest these are two distinct projects and one shouldn't take away from or compete with the other.  Let's do them both and really give the urban core a shot in the arm!


marcuscnelson

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #41 on: June 15, 2018, 01:51:19 AM »
I think I agree more with Lake here. Mostly, I just don't trust that the city will really put down the money to continuously maintain even more green space, when we've been struggling to maintain what we already have, and are already increasing or improving green space in other parts of the core. Given that this is prime land in the center of the urban core, I think it's overall more of a benefit to put more of that land to use for other things. I think the Wakefield plan, out of all the ones I've seen, looks like the most effective use of the space. When you have the development there, plus the park space the Wakefield plan offers, plus Hemming, plus Confederate and the rest of Hogan Creek, plus the District, plus Khan's Veterans Park, plus the space by the Y, and the future possibility of something on the T-U space, that's a substantial amount of park that already exists or could very soon exist.

thelakelander

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #42 on: June 15, 2018, 06:22:52 AM »
My hypothesis about the impact of green space is a lot more reasonable, IMHO, than those that suggest other plans for the Landing property will be the savior of DT.

I actually hate that people here continue to use the words "game changer" or "savior" of downtown with all of these projects. Honestly, neither the Landing or razing and making this small block a park will do either. I also believe there's a middle ground. For some reason, Jax tends to box itself into 100% retail or 100% green space. There's a ton of middle ground in there that can accomplish more and for cheaper than all of the razing options.

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It is proven all over the world that green spaces in urban venues are catalysts for surrounding development and a must for attracting permanent residents.

It's not. What is proven around the world is when you cluster, complementing uses within a compact area you create the synergy for pedestrian scale vibrancy. The world lesson is to stop treating the Landing site like a suburban isolated location and look at the Northbank as a larger district. Right off the bat, if we did that, we'd see we already have underutilized green space along the riverfront and a surface parking lot of nearly equal size to the Landing on the other side of Main Street. Don't show a rendering of grass on the Landing without considering what becomes of these spaces and the private spaces surrounding them. This is what the world does not do.


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As I have noted in other posts, even in the suburban mega developments, developers put out front in their marketing the value of the green spaces they create within their boundaries.  People want healthy outlets and Rummell even promoted this for the District (originally termed "Healthy Town").

People want vibrancy. Interactive green space is a part of that but so is walkability, mixed use, retail, commercial, etc. Under no circumstance is anyone talking about having no green space along the river.

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The space in front of the T-U center is hardly comparable to this plan.  And, you refer to the absence of residential living close by.  That is exactly my point, its not there now because the green space isn't there.  It's a classic chicken and egg issue.  Build the green space and watch the demand for residential increase.

There's little residential nearby because the surrounding uses are office and its the heart of the CBD. Ideally your residential should be all those vacant buildings north of Forsyth St to Springfield Park. There's also poor choices for public education and a the prospect of living an urban lifestyle that means a reverse commute for things we expect to walk too is what limits residential. There's poor lighting, poor streetscapes, unmaintained parks, unreliable transit, etc. Then there's the cost of renovating older vacant structures verses what the market is willing to pay to live in a restored structure and a city where getting financial incentives for the gaps isn't the easiest thing to do. These are things that limit residential growth. Not the Landing or making the Landing a grass lawn.

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No argument here.  I have said before, fund this project.  But, it benefits more Springfield.

It would greatly benefit downtown. We just have to stop turning downtown's back to the neighborhoods it was once seamlessly integrated with.

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And, it doesn't showcase our greatest asset, the river.
 

Friendship Fountain, the riverwalks, the Landing, etc. are all projects that were supposed to showcase the river. True showcasing is interactivity. If we really want to showcase the river, we allow people to play with it, not just look at it, which we can already do. Playing means fixing the docks, allowing public fishing in certain areas, bringing back maritime uses, etc. Do what we're attempting to do in Mayport. That's true activation and showcasing of the river.

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I would suggest these are two distinct projects and one shouldn't take away from or compete with the other.  Let's do them both and really give the urban core a shot in the arm!

I'd suggest downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods are a single cohesive urban core area and should be planned and developed as such. We need a lot of things to make that happen and funding is limited. IMO, it's just foolish to spend as much public money on these single sites to create isolated nodes that have nothing to do with one another or the core itself. We're simply continuing to blow wads of cash all in order to end up with substandard results. I just wish we can use some common sense like the rest of the world when it comes to downtown Jacksonville.

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Gunnar

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #43 on: June 15, 2018, 07:44:35 AM »
My position won't be popular, but I wish waterfront, in every location people gather in Jax, was set aside as well-maintained park space and belonged to the people for their enjoyment and their recreation.  You'd have the water, then the expansive public green space, and then private property interests could start with views of the waterfront and the public greenspace.  So on that principle, I support turning the Landing into a well-maintained and expansive green space with scenic views of the river.

Playing Devil's advocate, but who is to say that there will actually be a park. Maybe the city reconsiders as a better deal / proposal magically materializes once the Landing is gone. 
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fieldafm

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Re: Curry's Plan for the Landing Revealed
« Reply #44 on: June 15, 2018, 09:23:22 AM »
My position won't be popular, but I wish waterfront, in every location people gather in Jax, was set aside as well-maintained park space and belonged to the people for their enjoyment and their recreation.  You'd have the water, then the expansive public green space, and then private property interests could start with views of the waterfront and the public greenspace.  So on that principle, I support turning the Landing into a well-maintained and expansive green space with scenic views of the river.

Playing Devil's advocate, but who is to say that there will actually be a park. Maybe the city reconsiders as a better deal / proposal magically materializes once the Landing is gone.

Since this is basically the Peyton administration 2.0 (virtually the same players), another possibility is that the Landing gets torn down for a glorified lawn for the next 20 years.

Case in point:
1) Kids Kampus at Metro Park. https://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2011-sep-kids-kampus-vanishes. That park was later torn down before the end of the Peyton administration (less than 10 years after it opened). It is rumored that the money Sleiman paid COJ for the Landing parking lot eventually made its way into the funds used to tear out Kids Kampus. Seven years later, its still a lawn.

2) The Courthouse Plaza. https://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2011-jan-courthouse-asphalt-or-green-space-the-choice-is-yours. At one point, a plan was advanced to build a 7 lane road in front of the courthouse. MJ advocates helped advanced the abandonment of this asinine plan, in favor of creating a public green space to break up the massive scale of the new Courthouse. Since the Courthouse was opened in 2012, Art In Public Places money related to the courthouse construction (around ~$750k or so) has still yet to be spent... money that could be coupled with private donations from various legal parties (judges, law firms, etc) to actually turn this public space into an active green space. Six years later, its still a lawn.

3) Main Street Pocket Park. https://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2009-may-urban-parks-main-street-pocket-park. Still one of the top 10 worst moves downtown over the last 20 years.  A once-thriving Main Street is instead a series of parking lots, dead walls, bums... and a park 'that will eventually spur development in the urban core'.  Since 2007, the park is still a glorified lawn for bums to hang out on. No development has been spurred by this green space that was once described in almost magical terms.

Between these three things, and Friendship Fountain (which is again broke).... about ~$35 million has been spent on these projects.  Plenty of money gets spent downtown. Unfortunately, most of that money has been a complete waste as the basic fundamentals of urban development (clustering of complementary uses in a contextual and compact setting) have been consistently abandoned in favor of a series of one-off splashes- without any thought into how these splashes eventual failures fit into a long term, comprehensive goal - creating an attractive, vibrant and walkable urban neighborhood.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2018, 09:33:52 AM by fieldafm »