Author Topic: Brad Thoburn Reinvents?  (Read 3611 times)


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Brad Thoburn Reinvents?
« on: June 02, 2007, 07:05:21 PM »
As Jacksonville residents began fleeing from the urban core to the suburbs decades ago, shopping centers followed.

Now, a drive along parts of Beach or Atlantic boulevards or many other major thoroughfares reveals row upon row of strip malls.

City officials want to change that landscape.

"We have to think of these corridors, and many times they really are, the front door of our neighborhoods," Planning Director Brad Thoburn said.

Thoburn is hoping to shift from the strip mall concept to designs similar to the St. Johns Town Center, where buildings are clustered, parking isn't a focal point and walking from store to store is encouraged.

With help from a planning contractor, the city has developed a set of draft guidelines for new commercial developments. Though the city has the authority to approve zoning changes, Thoburn said he isn't sure yet if the guidelines eventually will become mandatory or simply be recommendations., (904) 359-4104


- Some buildings in urban developments should be close to the main roadways and be arranged so they limit the view of large parking areas.

- Vary the store heights in suburban centers; include set-backs of the second floor and above of buildings higher than 40 feet.

- Encourage a mix of retail, commercial, office, restaurant and high-density residential spaces.

- Cluster buildings in large scale developments to allow for patrons to park in one area and walk among the shops.~~~Looks

- Vary wall heights, roof pitches and other architectural designs to reduce the scale of large buildings.

- Entrances, awnings, display windows and other similar features should comprise at least 60 percent of the ground floor exterior in urban shopping centers.

- Hide Dumpsters and service areas behind screens or walls.~~~Pedestrian-friendly

- Feature canopies, seating areas or fountain displays in developments.

- Include walkways in parking areas and plazas in the middle of developments.

- Set back buildings with uncovered storefronts far enough from the curb to provide 4 feet of landscaping and 8-foot-wide walkways. If outdoor dining is included, the walkway should be 6 feet wide.~~~Landscaping

- Place overhead utilities underground when possible. But when overhead lines are in a development, don't put large-canopy trees nearby.

- Use plants as buffers on the outside of buildings and in pedestrian areas.

- Include planter islands and other landscaping in the parking medians.~~~Lighting

- Place lighting and electrical connections underground.

- Use shields on lights or recess lighting and don't use lights that cause a glare.

- Place lighting near building entrances; don't point lights toward the sky.

This was in today's Times Union.

Brad certainly seems to be stepping up to a plate that no one was even about to give him credit for knowing existed.
Whats up with Brad?

You think he got religion after the thrashing he recieved from this corner?



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Re: Brad Thoburn Reinvents?
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2007, 11:50:39 PM »
i'd like to see him take the lead to at least ATTEMPT to make them mandatory.  littlepage did a damning piece on thoburn's bossman (the mayor) and his "fear" of leading a couple of days ago.  thoburn could break the mold by making a move such as this.


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Re: Brad Thoburn Reinvents?
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2007, 11:57:34 PM »
If Thoburn is able to affect change in the zoning dept (we have seen some evidence of this in Springfield with the new inspector) he could be a candidate for Mayor in three years....

I know I am getting ahead of myself, but I would rather see a go-getter with strong political background and ties run than Dan Davis... I see him falling BIG time into the GOBN....


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Re: Brad Thoburn Reinvents?
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2007, 09:18:27 PM »
GOBN - Good Ole Boy Network    ;D


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Re: Brad Thoburn Reinvents?
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2007, 05:39:45 PM »
This sounds more like an evolution of existing sprawl practices.

Lipstick on a pig.