Author Topic: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy  (Read 1064 times)

thelakelander

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What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« on: November 29, 2021, 07:32:56 AM »
Quote


A new Home2 Suites in Brooklyn is the latest hotel project moving forward in Downtown Jacksonville. With more hotels in various stages of planning, it's time for Jacksonville to embrace the positive impacts these developments can have on the vibrancy of urban neighborhoods.

Read More:https://www.thejaxsonmag.com/article/what-hotels-can-do-for-downtown-vibrancy/
« Last Edit: November 29, 2021, 10:16:00 AM by Tacachale »
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acme54321

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2021, 09:18:06 AM »
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Tacachale

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2021, 10:16:14 AM »
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?

vicupstate

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2021, 10:43:23 AM »
Greenville SC is also a city where hotels not only initiated but provided additional milestone chapters to DT redevelopment. Starting with the Hyatt in the early '80's and continuing with the Westin in the late '90's.  A Hampton Inn was in the initial phase of the transformative Riverplace project in the early 2000's. In the 2010's, the ONE project (multi-phase infill project) included an Aloft hotel. The largest DT project ever, Camperdown, which recently completed, has an AC Hotel also.       

Even now the Grand Bohemian, now under construction, will soon boost a somewhat dormant corner of DT. Already a major office building was recently announced across the street, with additional buildings expected later.       
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heights unknown

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2021, 01:03:21 PM »
IMO, economics and other factors permitting, downtown Jax needs at least one huge signature "tower type" hotel in the downtown urban core, my preference, on the North Bank. Hopefully such a hotel would add an even more "shot in the arm" towards the progress and success of our downtown and the North Bank and Urban Core. In addition, that would also help solve the "hotel room" problem that has kept us from pitching for and/or landing a super bowl. Outside of a super bowl, we would have to try and find ways to grab people off of the interstates passing through to stay for a while or land in that hotel.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2021, 01:12:25 PM by heights unknown »
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marcuscnelson

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2021, 06:35:34 PM »
Eh, a tower hotel is probably not going to substantively shift the numbers for a Super Bowl. The requirements are for something like 19,000 "full-service" rooms within 60 minutes of the stadium. According to Visit Jacksonville, the entire area's rooms between "Downtown, beaches, and suburban areas" doesn't quite reach that number. Adding St. Johns and maybe Nassau might get you there but you'd have to get all of those hotels to commit to availability. The article of this thread suggests about 21,000 rooms for the whole northeast region, though a lot of those probably aren't full-service.

I'd say a definitive answer to the convention center matter is probably a useful step. I think most of us here are on board with adding an exhibition hall to the Hyatt and calling it a day. That, plus a focus on building a lively cluster of nightlife around the area that people will enjoy when they leave their hotel rooms makes it more likely that we could get hotel rooms there. If we actually have a master plan that reflects these ideas and build the public investments with that in mind, I don't see why we couldn't eventually get there.

As with anything, it's a question of leadership in this city and whether it has a coherent plan to guide development. We're in the midst of a massive housing deficit, the economy is running hot, missing out on a cycle again would be ludicrous.
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2021, 11:31:21 PM »
It would be interesting to see a list of all current, under construction and proposed hotels on the North and Southbanks (can include Brooklyn) and their number of rooms.

Future hotels, not yet specifically proposed, would include the Shipyards, Lot J (again?!), and the District to layer on top of the above.

It's amazing that there seems to be virtually no overarching/dedicated tourist promotions/branding and coordination of urban area "attractions" such as the Cummer, MOCA, Karpeles, Florida Theater, Daily's, Times Union Center, historic buildings and districts, Jax history, waterfront venues, restaurants, Farmers Market, RAM, etc.  Has anyone ever seen a brochure or attractions map (such as in a hotel lobby or at transit hubs, restaurants, theaters, attractions, etc.) or a Jax attractions website bringing all such info to one place?  I am aware of Visit Jax but that seems more focused around events than general tourism.  I am really talking about something much beyond that and more widespread and sophisticated.

I don't think there is enough business travel, especially after COVID, in the urban core to sustain large numbers of rooms without supplemental tourism stays.  Jax needs to step up its game a lot more and expand beyond the apparent emphasis on sporting events and the Beaches.

Heck, we don't have a single sign on our interstates highlighting "attractions" in the urban core.  That should be Tourism Marketing 101.

The City also needs to improve non-auto transit to stimulate urban tourism more.  Every "tourist" city I have enjoyed has transit to get you easily around without using a car.  And, to be sure, the Skyway and AV's don't cut it for me.

jaxoNOLE

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2021, 12:50:23 AM »
Has anyone ever seen a brochure or attractions map (such as in a hotel lobby or at transit hubs, restaurants, theaters, attractions, etc.) or a Jax attractions website bringing all such info to one place?  I am aware of Visit Jax but that seems more focused around events than general tourism.  I am really talking about something much beyond that and more widespread and sophisticated.

Not to say it's sophisticated, but downtownjacksonville.org does have a mapping feature to highlight businesses downtown. You have to intend to head downtown and search for stuff to do to find that site though.

thelakelander

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2021, 09:21:19 AM »
Heck, we don't have a single sign on our interstates highlighting "attractions" in the urban core.  That should be Tourism Marketing 101.

We did have one sign off the highway for the Landing. However, we successfully took care of that problem!
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jaxlongtimer

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2021, 11:18:22 PM »
Has anyone ever seen a brochure or attractions map (such as in a hotel lobby or at transit hubs, restaurants, theaters, attractions, etc.) or a Jax attractions website bringing all such info to one place?  I am aware of Visit Jax but that seems more focused around events than general tourism.  I am really talking about something much beyond that and more widespread and sophisticated.

Not to say it's sophisticated, but downtownjacksonville.org does have a mapping feature to highlight businesses downtown. You have to intend to head downtown and search for stuff to do to find that site though.

Just to be clear, I am talking more about the greater urban core, i.e. including Riverside/Avondale, Springfield, Eastside, San Marco, Rail Yard District, etc.  This points out another issue I have with how we promote our "downtown."  It is way to narrow a focus to only promote Downtown.  It should really be about the entire urban core that could act as a force multiplier for Downtown that likely doesn't, in and of itself, have enough "attractions" at this time to justify robust tourism.  Once again, we are a city lacking in leadership, vision, creativity and strategic planning.

jaxoNOLE

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Re: What hotels can do for downtown vibrancy
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2021, 12:43:48 AM »
Has anyone ever seen a brochure or attractions map (such as in a hotel lobby or at transit hubs, restaurants, theaters, attractions, etc.) or a Jax attractions website bringing all such info to one place?  I am aware of Visit Jax but that seems more focused around events than general tourism.  I am really talking about something much beyond that and more widespread and sophisticated.

Not to say it's sophisticated, but downtownjacksonville.org does have a mapping feature to highlight businesses downtown. You have to intend to head downtown and search for stuff to do to find that site though.

Just to be clear, I am talking more about the greater urban core, i.e. including Riverside/Avondale, Springfield, Eastside, San Marco, Rail Yard District, etc.  This points out another issue I have with how we promote our "downtown."  It is way to narrow a focus to only promote Downtown.  It should really be about the entire urban core that could act as a force multiplier for Downtown that likely doesn't, in and of itself, have enough "attractions" at this time to justify robust tourism.  Once again, we are a city lacking in leadership, vision, creativity and strategic planning.

That website is a product of DVI, so it makes sense that it is limited in scope. Perhaps the logical next step would be to continue expanding DVI to include downtown-adjacent areas (as recently done, though not as broadly as you suggest). I guess the question becomes a tradeoff between coverage area and focus--will we give them adequate resources to expand their coverage without sacrificing quality? Or are we better served by tasking a different group to complement DVI? And as I type, I feel it's unfortunate to be asking such basic questions...however, it goes back to other debates I've seen here about the scope of "Downtown." The CBD suffers comparatively when we identify the sports district as a peer area in the eyes of development incentives. After all my rambling, I guess the takeaway is -- where do we focus the energy? DVI, for now, lives within their boundaries.