Author Topic: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park  (Read 160997 times)

Charles Hunter

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #435 on: March 31, 2024, 06:19:53 PM »
The Times-Union has a Guest Editorial with architect Ted Pappas weighing in on Riverfront Plaza.

https://www.jacksonville.com/story/opinion/columns/guest/2024/03/31/laura-street-old-landing-site-can-be-new-centerpiece-of-jacksonville/73099879007/

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Private residential properties occupy 90% of the river frontage in Jacksonville. The remainder is occupied by industrial, military, city offices and a small fraction of our Downtown Northbank riverfront properties.

...

Can you imagine a dedicated public park, perhaps like Friendship Fountain that glows nightly and can be seen from two bridges and the Southbank? It would truly be a vibrant skyline.

Historically, the development of Jacksonville’s government center, the cultural center and the commercial center have all clustered along the Laura Street axis. Bordering both sides of the street are some of Jacksonville’s most important buildings,

...

The 6-acre riverfront park could become Celebration Park (rather than Riverfront Plaza, with a high-rise), dedicated for public use, just as Memorial Park in Riverside has accommodated pedestrians enjoying the St. Johns River for over 100 years.

Is it important that every square foot of rare riverfront property produces ad valorem taxes when the value and positive impact of parks throughout the country are well-documented? With over 840 square miles of land area, can’t this city dedicate 6 acres of land to celebrate our world-famous river?

marcuscnelson

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #436 on: March 31, 2024, 07:04:03 PM »
Celebration Park is an interesting name (although we already have a Greenscape Celebration Park). I don't hate it.

I've long expressed concern over dedicating this much real estate to parks that will need to be maintained and programmed. I know jaxlongtimer has long shared a view similar to Mr. Pappas. What I will say to this site is that we are already essentially in about this position anyway. The Landing is long gone, and River View Plaza has been reduced to atoms.

It might make enough sense here to scale back some of the ambition to put a tower on this site and focus on building a good signature park that connects well enough to JWJ via Laura Street. That will still need to involve some way of creating a connection to the Main Street Bridge and Friendship Park but that seems now to be much more achievable than finding someone to build a tower. If we have to start over on that half anyway then now is probably the time for that decision.
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Florida Power And Light

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #437 on: March 31, 2024, 08:38:56 PM »
After all…. Jacksonville’s "Landing" should be Public….. Jacksonville’s Gracious Southern Front Porch (*).   
The waterfront parcel is too valuable for anything else….(*)
Et Al (*)

* Trade Mark/ Copy Right/ General Useless Pontification
Related to Downtown Jacksonille Waterway Viewscape and General Public Engagement "Potential".
« Last Edit: March 31, 2024, 09:18:01 PM by Florida Power And Light »

jaxlongtimer

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #438 on: March 31, 2024, 10:18:42 PM »
Celebration Park is an interesting name (although we already have a Greenscape Celebration Park). I don't hate it.

I've long expressed concern over dedicating this much real estate to parks that will need to be maintained and programmed. I know jaxlongtimer has long shared a view similar to Mr. Pappas. What I will say to this site is that we are already essentially in about this position anyway. The Landing is long gone, and River View Plaza has been reduced to atoms.

It might make enough sense here to scale back some of the ambition to put a tower on this site and focus on building a good signature park that connects well enough to JWJ via Laura Street. That will still need to involve some way of creating a connection to the Main Street Bridge and Friendship Park but that seems now to be much more achievable than finding someone to build a tower. If we have to start over on that half anyway then now is probably the time for that decision.

Correct, Marcus, I fully agree with Ted Pappas and beyond  ;D.  A hundred years from now future generations will be most appreciative of the current generation putting parks on our riverfront. 

Jax has always lived for the short run... it's time to think out much further.  If this was done 50 to 70 years ago much of what we discuss today on the Jaxon would be moot.  We took our riverfront and put City Hall, the Courthouse, parking lots, the Performing Arts Center, CSX, Berkman Plaza and now a Four Seasons and Mosh on it.  In 50 more years, much of this is going to lose its luster while a population likely to be twice, triple or more of our current population will bemoan the lack of proportional access to the riverfront.  Look at any other major city with water and see how jealous they would be of what we could do now.

Property taxes on buildings one block or so back from the river will be a lot higher than riverfront with greenspaces adjacent.  Just look at Manhattan and Central Park, which isn't even on the water.

By the way, the apartments rising on the river at the former Times Union site are already a blight on our riverfront if you ask me.  Way too close to the rivers edge for their height.  I expressed concerns about this before and this project validates them in my book.  Just ugly.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2024, 09:27:19 PM by jaxlongtimer »

Fallen Buckeye

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #439 on: April 02, 2024, 11:36:43 AM »
Look at any other major city with water and see how jealous they would be of what we could do now.

Meanwhile in Columbus...


Or NYC (Battery Park)...


No brainer quality of life and tourism investment imo.

Zac T

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #440 on: April 12, 2024, 07:54:54 PM »
DIA set to discuss whether to RFP the Riverfront Plaza development pad now or wait until a later date in hopes of a more favorable economic environment

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Faced with a high-rise project that is no longer financially feasible but is an integrated part of the city’s planned amenities at Riverfront Plaza, the Downtown Investment Authority has a decision to make on how to move forward with developing the Northbank park.
...
The question before the committee was when to put the property back up for grabs, with Boyer saying that doing it now or holding off until later would both have advantages and disadvantages.

Seeking new proposals soon could help the city stay on schedule on the two-phase construction plan for public improvements for the plaza, she said. The second phase of construction is designed to merge with the start of construction on the private development in early 2026.

But moving forward quickly could result in the parcel drawing fewer bids than it might if the city waits until interest rates come down and cheaper financing becomes available to developers. Waiting, however, would force the city to build supports for the walkway and a wall for the beer garden to stay true to its plans for the park, which has been fully designed and is under construction.

Boyer said American Lions is still interested in developing the site. She said two other developers also had communicated with the DIA about it.

“I would not say there is just widespread national interest, but we haven’t marketed it,” she said.

https://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/news/2024/apr/11/dia-considers-path-to-take-on-former-american-lions-site-at-riverfront-plaza/

jaxoNOLE

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #441 on: April 25, 2024, 05:45:24 PM »

jcjohnpaint

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #442 on: April 25, 2024, 05:51:39 PM »
Is it just me, but are things moving much faster under Deegan?

Ken_FSU

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #443 on: April 25, 2024, 07:08:36 PM »
Is it just me, but are things moving much faster under Deegan?

Check out progress on the RAM skate park and the creek work at the old T-U site.

Deegan and her team are getting things done.

Crazy what happens when you don’t use city resources and the CIP to reward or punish your political allies/foes. 

Ken_FSU

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #444 on: April 28, 2024, 09:00:01 PM »
https://www.jacksonville.com/story/opinion/columns/guest/2024/04/28/mayor-deegan-team-should-respect-public-concerns-on-riverfront-plaza/73417173007/

It’s baffling to me how many people are opposed to a riverfront restaurant as part of the park.

Not sure if these people realize just how dead the area is after 5 pm.

Park does us no good if there’s no reason to go and stay there.

Same with JWJ Park. Going to turn these spaces into passive 9-5 wastelands if we don’t add permanent amenities and uses.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2024, 09:16:27 PM by Ken_FSU »

marcuscnelson

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #445 on: April 28, 2024, 09:48:48 PM »
I'm confused by the insistence that a park must by design be largely empty green space. Obviously it's possible for one to do too much (JWJ's proposed redesign comes to mind) but with how much open "flex space" has already been created and even expanded by the playground and Hogan/Water reconfiguration I'm confused what exactly Mr. Pariani expects people to do. He mentions neglect but what would happen to empty space other than neglect?

Also 6 years? The Landing's demolition wrapped up 4 years ago. Seems like a basic timeline thing.

Now on the other hand, I wonder if it would make any sense to put the restaurant where the tower had been proposed. Since that was planned to be raised anyway in order to support both the tower and access to the Main Street Bridge, one could kill two birds with one stone by moving the restaurant there. That does still mean needing to program the expanded lower space though.
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thelakelander

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #446 on: April 28, 2024, 09:59:24 PM »
https://www.jacksonville.com/story/opinion/columns/guest/2024/04/28/mayor-deegan-team-should-respect-public-concerns-on-riverfront-plaza/73417173007/

It’s baffling to me how many people are opposed to a riverfront restaurant as part of the park.

Not sure if these people realize just how dead the area is after 5 pm.

Park does us no good if there’s no reason to go and stay there.

Same with JWJ Park. Going to turn these spaces into passive 9-5 wastelands if we don’t add permanent amenities and uses.

We've had a vacant field out there for several years now. Most of these people didn't visit it then and won't visit it on a regular basis when its completed.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

thelakelander

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #447 on: April 28, 2024, 10:05:13 PM »
Quote
The small piece of cherished riverfront that is downtown’s outdoor living room has been free of its failed development for over six years.

This quote from the editorial says a lot. No matter what anyone thought about the Landing, the loss of +30 businesses and restaurants, hundreds of downtown employees, thousands of patrons and regular programmed events has hurt downtown over the past six years. That area has been a ghost town outside of a few random, programmed events. A lot more than park space and a single restaurant in it, will be needed to breathe life back into the Northbank core riverfront.

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For clarity and simplicity, build a riverfront park in one fell swoop without a riverside restaurant or a private residential tower. Remember, less is more.

These can be built as future infill development pads, if there's a concern with feasibility. That doesn't seem to be the case with the restaurant at this point, although back-of-house operations and their impact on getting goods and trash to Hogan Street/Water Street, may be a long term maintenance and upkeep issue.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2024, 10:12:03 PM by thelakelander »
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #448 on: April 29, 2024, 03:11:58 PM »
^ To me, it is about balance.  One alternate is to have restaurants surround the outer boundaries of a park or green space and open up toward same. 

We had a nice riverfront restaurant on the Southbank and tore it down.  We had several riverfront restaurants on the Northbank and tore those down.  With this track record and resiliency concerns, some decent planning and inputs should be performed before plowing ahead just so we can say we did something.

In Battery Park in Manhattan, they have a restaurant facing the water and it is surrounded on all sides by a park and greenspace.  The difference is they have far more greenspace than Jax has to work with.  Thus, proportionality should be a factor in any developments.  A restaurant should not dominate a park or interfere with non-patrons using the park but, rather, compliment the park's usage.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2024, 10:54:08 PM by jaxlongtimer »

fsu813

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Re: DIA wants the Landing to start with a park
« Reply #449 on: May 01, 2024, 06:31:43 AM »
I'm confused by the insistence that a park must by design be largely empty green space.

Everyone has an opinion, including Rick.

Empty space hasn't been the Riverfront Parks Now position, however. Commercial developments are fine, but as others mentioned, balance is important. As is the timeline to have a functional, accessible space.... which is currently looking like 2028 if DIA moves forward with a highrise in the NE quadrant of the space, again.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2024, 07:22:20 AM by fsu813 »