Author Topic: More people moving to downtown Jacksonville but pandemic is masking urban vibe  (Read 1036 times)

thelakelander

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Thoughts?

Quote
Boomtown or ghost town?

Downtown Jacksonville has had elements of both over the past year and a half, creating a sense of vertigo about what direction it's headed. Construction of new apartment buildings keeps attracting more residents, even as the COVID-19 pandemic drags on and muffles the urban vibe that draws people to the core.

"it's a really challenging times for everyone, but particularly for us in downtown," said Downtown Vision CEO Jake Gordon.

A State of Downtown report issued Tuesday by Downtown Vision, a non-profit advocating for downtown redevelopment, shows that about 6,100 people now live in downtown, an 18 percent increase since January 2019.

More residential projects are under construction. When they open, downtown will gain another 1,000 residents, moving closer to the long-standing goal of 10,000 residents, according to the Downtown Vision report.

https://www.jacksonville.com/story/news/local/2020/08/11/more-people-move-downtown-jacksonville-but-pandemic-muffles-urban-vibe/3346951001/
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JaxAvondale

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I routinely run/cool down walk through downtown. There are definitely more people out and about on the streets during the weekend than in previous years.

bl8jaxnative

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If you're talking downtown-downtown, no, definitely not.  If you're throwing brooklyn and southbank in with downtown-downtown, maybe.

thelakelander

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Definitely Brooklyn. I'd say there's less people in the heart of downtown now on the weekends than ever before. The two big hits were the elimination of the Landing and COVID resulting in many getting to work from home. The couple of times I've been into the office on the weekends, the Northbank Riverwalk has been a pure ghost town. Basically me, a few homeless under the riverfront shelters, and an occasional resident allowing their dog to use the Landing lawn as a restroom during the middle of the day.
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Ken_FSU

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Definitely Brooklyn. I'd say there's less people in the heart of downtown now on the weekends than ever before. The two big hits were the elimination of the Landing and COVID resulting in many getting to work from home. The couple of times I've been into the office on the weekends, the Northbank Riverwalk has been a pure ghost town. Basically me, a few homeless under the riverfront shelters, and an occasional resident allowing their dog to use the Landing lawn as a restroom during the middle of the day.

Was thinking the same thing when I was came into the office this Sunday.

It was eerie how quiet the entire CBD was.

The removal of the Landing was a huge blow to activity and vibrancy on the weekends.

fieldafm

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The removal of the Landing was a huge blow to activity and vibrancy on the weekends.

100%. 

Tacachale

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The removal of the Landing was a huge blow to activity and vibrancy on the weekends.

100%.

Oh yeah. I can't remember the last time the Northbank core seemed so dead either during the day or at night. Not that it was a picture of liveliness before.
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marcuscnelson

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The removal of the Landing was a huge blow to activity and vibrancy on the weekends.

Bu-but front lawn!
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BridgeTroll

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The removal of the Landing was a huge blow to activity and vibrancy on the weekends.

Bu-but front lawn!

And doggie toilet... do not walk barefoot...
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Papa33

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One thing that caught my attention in the State of Downtown report was that downtown has 7,464,197 square feet of office space while the burbs have 17,983,636.  If my math is correct that is a 30%/70% ration.  Just curious to anyone who might know or who has an opinion, is this a pretty normal ratio for Florida cities (Miami, Orlando, Tampa) and what, if anything, does this say about the way Jacksonville has developed?

thelakelander

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I'm not sure but outside of maybe South Florida, I'm pretty confident the burbs in Tampa and Orlando have more office space than their downtowns. Westshore alone, has more office space than DT Tampa.
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tufsu1

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^ Westshore is the largest office district in Florida

bl8jaxnative

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One thing that caught my attention in the State of Downtown report was that downtown has 7,464,197 square feet of office space while the burbs have 17,983,636.  If my math is correct that is a 30%/70% ration.  Just curious to anyone who might know or who has an opinion, is this a pretty normal ratio for Florida cities (Miami, Orlando, Tampa) and what, if anything, does this say about the way Jacksonville has developed?

That's pretty normal.  IIRC by the turn of the century 2/3 of office space in US cities was outside of the CBD.   Post WWII cities like Jacksonville and Austin tend to be be much higher.

For a place like Denver, the Tech Center ( suburbs ) has 50% more office space than downtown.  And that doesn't include all the other areas.


Keep in mind when looking at this stuff, you'll see some numbers that talk about central city vs suburbs, not just CBD.   If you're looking at downtowns, be mindful that a if you look at central city Charlotte or Denver, they're going to have a lot of office space in the central city that's essentially suburban but not downtown.   Denver has a growing area out by the airport for that, ontop of places like Cherry  Creek  / Colorado Blvd.

Depending on what you're trying to measure, that distinction may be important.

bl8jaxnative

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ah, here's an example of the stuff out there.  This is one from Brookings

https://www.brookings.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/lang.pdf


In 1999, New York and Chicago werethe only metropolitan areas with the majority of office space located intheir primary downtown.Philadelphiaand Miami already have more than halftheir office space in “edgeless” locations.


<SNIP>

The U.S. Census Bureau designatessuburbs with growing concentrationsof employment as central cites andthis definition adds a good deal ofoffice space to the central city total.5Planned suburbs, such as Irvine, CA,south of Los Angeles, are identified ascentral cities, which complicates thecomparison between city and subur-ban office development. Were it notfor this definition shift, the central cityshare of the metropolitan marketwould have slipped even more dramat-ically. Yet when places such as Irvine,CA, and Irving, TX, become “centralcities,” the category loses some of itsmeaning