Author Topic: Food court at the Landing closed...  (Read 7564 times)

vicupstate

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #90 on: February 21, 2019, 09:46:06 AM »
Quote
I could pick almost any city in the world, large or small, with water on par with Jax, and would venture to say I would find more proportionally larger waterfront green space by far than what we have in Jax presently.

I would say the opposite is true. The District is nothing but vacant land right now and will have plenty of public waterfront when completed. The Shipyards and Metro park as well. There is already Friendship Fountain and the Riverwalks (North and South). The T-U property will likely have new public water frontage as well.
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Todd_Parker

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #91 on: February 21, 2019, 11:36:23 AM »
On a sort of related note, is anyone aware of how business at the Cowford Chophouse is doing?

jaxlongtimer

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #92 on: February 21, 2019, 11:48:05 AM »
Quote
I could pick almost any city in the world, large or small, with water on par with Jax, and would venture to say I would find more proportionally larger waterfront green space by far than what we have in Jax presently.

I would say the opposite is true. The District is nothing but vacant land right now and will have plenty of public waterfront when completed. The Shipyards and Metro park as well. There is already Friendship Fountain and the Riverwalks (North and South). The T-U property will likely have new public water frontage as well.

I guess our differences arise from what standard we are judging this by.  I am looking for dozens or more of, ideally, contiguous/connected acres directly on the water front, not 3 acres here, 4 acres there, a small area in front of the Times Union center in-between.  What you and Lake are suggesting hardly compares to some of the pictures I posted from NYC.

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The density around this site isn't changing. It's Class A office buildings, a seldom used performing arts center a bridge, and parking decks. This means, park with nothing in it or anything else, the site serves as a central location to an environment that will generally close up shop after 5pm on weekdays and not even be open on weekends. It is what it is. To change that dynamic, you'll need an integrated mix of uses that has the ability to draw people from outside the general vicinity on a consistent basis. Something like a food hall, cultural attraction, etc. There's nothing wrong with green space, but for it to be a draw, the other mixes of uses will be needed.

Lake, I understand your point.  However, the Battery Park greenway would appear to have faced similar conditions/obstacles, being surrounded by Wall Street.  Today, there is significant residential and retail development there.  And, much of it is blocks away from the green spaces.  But, people are walking in droves to the greenways.  If urban living is about promoting walkability, why would we not expect downtown residents to walk 5 or more blocks to our greenways.  In the end, like my comment above about what standards to use, here it may be about what assumptions we make.

Overall, I think we all agree that it takes a basket of things to make Downtown work. I am not suggesting that extensive and sizable greenways alone will fix it but do think they are an essential and necessary ingredient, one which I don't see currently included in a vision for Downtown.

thelakelander

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #93 on: February 21, 2019, 12:02:13 PM »
NYC is such a bad example to use for our scale and context. May as well use Paris or Barcelona. How old is Battery Park and the greenways? What was there prior to their construction and prior to the construction of what they replaced? Much of Manhattan is landfill and the population density is of a level that will never happen here.  It's apples and oranges when talking about the Landing. With that said, things don't have to be an either/or situation. The Landing is essentially a poor maintained riverfront plaza with commercial space integrated into it now. 
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #94 on: February 21, 2019, 12:13:42 PM »
NYC is such a bad example to use for our scale and context. May as well use Paris or Barcelona. How old is Battery Park and the greenways? What was there prior to their construction and prior to the construction of what they replaced? Much of Manhattan is landfill and the population density is of a level that will never happen here.  It's apples and oranges when talking about the Landing. With that said, things don't have to be an either/or situation. The Landing is essentially a poor maintained riverfront plaza with commercial space integrated into it now.

I explained previously why I used in NYC as an example.  How about St. Louis?



Hong Kong?



San Diego?



Louisville?



Brooklyn?

« Last Edit: February 21, 2019, 12:24:01 PM by jaxlongtimer »

thelakelander

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #95 on: February 21, 2019, 01:39:26 PM »
1. St Louis - Is that real? That's just a sketch showing a park over an active railyard paralleling I-64. The real space is the land around the St. Louis Arch. That's urban renewal and what was one of the most interesting and compact areas of St. Louis. I saw an extensive photo thread of what was there years ago.

2. Hong Kong - I get what you're dreaming of but that's totally out of scale and not what's in store for the small Landing site. For that vision to happen, most of the buildings along the riverfront would have to razed, which is unrealistic and unnecessary.

3. Louisville - Louisville is a city that would be more comparable to Jax. The scene you show is essentially Metropolitan Park. Curry is handing that over to Khan to put buildings on it. Waterfront Park would be more like a well maintained and invested Metropolitan Park. It's not actually in the center of downtown because I-64 hugs the riverfront.

4. San Diego is a good example. The pic you show is across the street from the Embarcadero. It would be like turning the Landing's riverfront surface parking lot into a green space. That would be way more cheaper than spending $18 million for the right to raze the Landing. That $18 million could actually go into making a pretty nice green space on the land next door. Also, here's some other shots from their waterfront that I took a few months back. It's a pretty pedestrian friendly waterfront that mixes green space with attractions, retail and dining:









5. Brooklyn - The density makes the context and how people respond and activate the space totally different. However, if you're just talking about the activities that take place in the waterfront setting across the street, that can be done by leaving the Landing's main building up and removing the two smaller riverfront buildings. Given it has more retail space than what's needed, it's not a bad option because existing tenants could be relocated within a portion of the main building as opposed to being forced to close.

« Last Edit: February 21, 2019, 01:42:25 PM by thelakelander »
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jagsonville

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #96 on: February 21, 2019, 05:26:03 PM »
Here’s my take on this situation: The city should have provided garage parking for the landing from the beginning but at this point that’s neither here nor there and certainly not Curry’s fault. Sleiman bought the landing knowing it didn’t have a garage. In 2007 be bought land from the city which could have become a garage but instead he never took title while charging for surface parking. He never asked the city to build a garage on that lot and when the city gave money for the parador garage right next door which the landing could use at night and on weekends he scoffed and said that solution wasn’t good enough. In addition even though he has plenty of money he has purposefully not invested a dime into the place in 15 years. Sleiman could have easily made the landing into a marketplace but he clearly has no interest. He has used the black eye it represents for the city and the ridiculously long lease agreement as bargaining chips. Curry is someone that likes to get things done/facing re-election  and although the amount of money being thrown around is ridiculous, he is in a bad spot with the landing and it’s perception for Jacksonville. So here we are, should we have a run down landing for the foreseeable future with an unrealistic owner who only wants to tear it down to build a 5-6 story mixed use development with tons of city incentives? Or do we pay a ton of city money to buy him out, tear it down and RFP now and see what other investors will propose. Personally, its been 15 years and Sleiman ain’t it.

thelakelander

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #97 on: February 21, 2019, 06:39:52 PM »
What makes you sure there's an RFP coming outside of one for demolition contractors and park design services? Also getting rid of Sleiman and demolishing the building, kicking out tenants and demolishing the property or three different items. So the last two don't equate to being the best and only way to move forward.
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KenFSU

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #98 on: February 21, 2019, 09:14:28 PM »
What makes you sure there's an RFP coming outside of one for demolition contractors and park design services?

I'd be shocked if there was a formal RFP issued.

If the plan is to RFP for redevelopment, why do you need to knock down the buildings first? Shouldn't all options - including working with the existing structure - be left on the table? Isn't there the chance to the winning developer would be willing to pay for demolition?

Mayor seems dead set on greenspace.

It's almost like the Jags can't legally develop Met Park without the city making a good faith effort to shift the greenspace to an equally prominent riverfront location.

But I'm sure that's got nothing to do with it...
« Last Edit: February 21, 2019, 09:19:35 PM by KenFSU »

jaxlongtimer

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #99 on: February 21, 2019, 09:21:13 PM »
Another thought for this being green space occurred to me.  If we assume the river's propensity to flood its banks is going to increase, areas immediately along the river may better serve as buffers to flooding Downtown, essentially parks when dry and wetlands in flood conditions.  What is the elevation of the Landing property?  How did it hold up under Irma's flooding?  Seems to me that area was under several feet of water.

jaxnyc79

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #100 on: February 21, 2019, 09:24:09 PM »
Honestly, the Landing coming down is no big deal in my opinion.  I've never been impressed with it for as far back as I can remember: never enjoyed the food court, never liked the structural design, and never liked the fact that given it turns its back on downtown, it's this sort of strip mall on the waterfront.  When Sleiman acquired, I had little hope of anything really transpiring to change it.  Sleiman has put uninspired strip stucco monoliths all across the city. 

I'm fine with the city adding usable park space on that part of the river in that part of downtown.  I quite like the idea.  Yes, I know the city has plenty of other park space it should be maintaining.  But when I worked downtown years ago, I often imagined the hideous looking Landing gone, and something like Memorial Park in Riverside, right there in the center of the cluster of the tallest buildings in the city.  I don't know what the decision-makers there will ultimately decide, but if we're talking about Memorial Park II in the heart of the CBD, but with sweeping river views and adjacency (unlike Hemming), then I'm all for it.  And if the people of Jax are scared off from riverfront green spaces in the heart of their city because of a homeless and mental health problem they've failed to tackle, then the people of Jax absolutely do not deserve a vibrant downtown or anything close to it.  They should remain behind their gates and their garages, and watch TV shows about high-energy urban vibrancy.

thelakelander

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #101 on: February 21, 2019, 09:59:59 PM »
Another thought for this being green space occurred to me.  If we assume the river's propensity to flood its banks is going to increase, areas immediately along the river may better serve as buffers to flooding Downtown, essentially parks when dry and wetlands in flood conditions.  What is the elevation of the Landing property?  How did it hold up under Irma's flooding?  Seems to me that area was under several feet of water.
The Landing didn't flood. The building's floor elevation is well above the street's.
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KenFSU

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #102 on: February 21, 2019, 10:29:52 PM »
And if the people of Jax are scared off from riverfront green spaces in the heart of their city because of a homeless and mental health problem they've failed to tackle, then the people of Jax absolutely do not deserve a vibrant downtown or anything close to it.

I think you can support riverfront greenspace in our urban core without supporting the wholesale removal of one of the only retail and dining destinations in downtown Jacksonville that isn't closed nights and weekends. Removing Laura Street's anchor tenant and the closest thing the northbank has to a 24/7 destination and replacing it with a sun-up to sun-down park isn't the recipe for improving vibrancy. It's a recipe for killing it.

Hell, between the Times-Union center's lawn, South Hogan, and opening up the Landing and removing the Main Street Bridge ramps, you could probably build some amazing park space right into the existing Landing.

I just don't see the need to demolish it, and I'll never agree with the arguments that the bones of the Landing are the reason we're where we're at it today, rather than stubborness, politics, and failure to provide adequate parking necessary to lure anchor tenants.

It's an iconic structure that - speaking of brand - genuinely is part of Jacksonville's identity.

When Grandma's sick, and she can't stop fighting with Grandpa, you know what you don't do?

You don't kill Grandma.

You find a way to work it out, and then move forward.

Because Grandma's part of the family, part of your history, and you've invested a lot into her.

It'd be like Wayne Weaver deciding in the mid-2000s, "The Jags are only drawing 40,000 fans a game. Better bulldoze the stadium."

Hate everything about this.

Such a beautiful space, with so much untapped potential, we'll miss her when she's gone.


jagsonville

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #103 on: February 21, 2019, 11:53:18 PM »
I hope an RFP will be issued but time will tell, even if one is issued I don’t expect any proposals that will impress anyone anyways. No one is going to make the same mistake as Rouse and build an urban mall downtown. Most likely it will look something like Tapestry Park, 5-6 stories, apartments enveloping a garage and retail on the bottom, whoopty doo. The only thing the landing is good at is a gathering spot for special events which can easily be accomplished with an active greens space. In its current state its just a poorly maintained ghost town with a couple subpar restaurants. Im not going to miss it at all.

jaxnyc79

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Re: Food court at the Landing closed...
« Reply #104 on: February 23, 2019, 02:57:45 PM »
And if the people of Jax are scared off from riverfront green spaces in the heart of their city because of a homeless and mental health problem they've failed to tackle, then the people of Jax absolutely do not deserve a vibrant downtown or anything close to it.

I think you can support riverfront greenspace in our urban core without supporting the wholesale removal of one of the only retail and dining destinations in downtown Jacksonville that isn't closed nights and weekends. Removing Laura Street's anchor tenant and the closest thing the northbank has to a 24/7 destination and replacing it with a sun-up to sun-down park isn't the recipe for improving vibrancy. It's a recipe for killing it.

Hell, between the Times-Union center's lawn, South Hogan, and opening up the Landing and removing the Main Street Bridge ramps, you could probably build some amazing park space right into the existing Landing.

I just don't see the need to demolish it, and I'll never agree with the arguments that the bones of the Landing are the reason we're where we're at it today, rather than stubborness, politics, and failure to provide adequate parking necessary to lure anchor tenants.

It's an iconic structure that - speaking of brand - genuinely is part of Jacksonville's identity.

When Grandma's sick, and she can't stop fighting with Grandpa, you know what you don't do?

You don't kill Grandma.

You find a way to work it out, and then move forward.

Because Grandma's part of the family, part of your history, and you've invested a lot into her.

It'd be like Wayne Weaver deciding in the mid-2000s, "The Jags are only drawing 40,000 fans a game. Better bulldoze the stadium."

Hate everything about this.

Such a beautiful space, with so much untapped potential, we'll miss her when she's gone.



If demand is there for places to eat, establishments will rise elsewhere
in fact, instead of just a linear strip along the waterfront, maybe a strip of restaurants can be built off the river to start to create a corridor of activity deeper into downtown rather than just along the river.