The Jaxson

Jacksonville by Neighborhood => Urban Neighborhoods => Springfield => Topic started by: Metro Jacksonville on April 16, 2008, 04:00:00 AM

Title: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Metro Jacksonville on April 16, 2008, 04:00:00 AM
Is Springfield a viable retail market?

(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-4382-p1090552.JPG)

Metro Jacksonville takes a look at the recently released LISC MetroEdge Springfield Retail study

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/content/view/762
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on April 16, 2008, 07:46:41 AM
SPAR, SAMBA and other entities in the community have been courting retailers for at least 2 years.

SPAR sent representatives to the Intl Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) meeting in Ponte Vedra the first week of April, and will be attending the national ICSC in Las Vegas in May and the Florida ICSC in Orlando in August.

Springfield has also been chosen by ICSC/LISC as one of the top 5 emerging neighborhoods in the country (the others are in Philadelphia, Twin Cities, Detroit and Bed-Sty in New York).

Springfield is not sitting around waiting for the phone to ring.

Stop by 3 Layers on 6th & Walnut to hear their story of being swamped by pent up demand.

Entrepreneurs, retailers and creative office call SPAR at 353-7727 for more information!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: vicupstate on April 16, 2008, 07:57:18 AM
I would not spend resources going after national retailers.  They are not pioneers, they are followers.  They have the money to buy in AFTER the 'discovery' has been made.  They are not risk takers, particularly in urban areas.  They let the mom and pops do the heavy lifting, and then pouch from their success.

I would try to get the businesses already in Jax that have found success elsewhere in the metro area, and try to convince them to relocate or branch off into Springfield.  Second, I would look to rstate/regional retailers that are in FL, but not Jacksonville. Third, I would look for the start ups with the best business plans.   

Going these routes will also give you something unique that every other neighborhood can't duplicate.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 16, 2008, 08:46:20 AM
Quote
SPAR, SAMBA and other entities in the community have been courting retailers for at least 2 years.

SPAR sent representatives to the Intl Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) meeting in Ponte Vedra the first week of April, and will be attending the national ICSC in Las Vegas in May and the Florida ICSC in Orlando in August.

Springfield is not sitting around waiting for the phone to ring.

Is there a strategy in place to attract complementing businesses in certain locations or around existing businesses to create some sort of retail /dining /arts or entertainment district?

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Stop by 3 Layers on 6th & Walnut to hear their story of being swamped by pent up demand.

Three Layers has certainly gotten off to a good start, as well as Jim Brown's BBQ.  Now imagine if within visual walking distance of Three Layers there was a book store, record store, pizza shop, neighborhood sports bar, etc. all located within the same building or the same block?  Imagine, if through SAMBA and SPAR, businesses are led to improve their signage, facades and incorporate embracing the street with pedestrian friendly elements.  Imagine the impact of if we are able to work with local landlords of vacant commercial spaces and get just one block of Main, Walnut, 8th or any other street filled with a diverse collection of businesses, what that would do for Springfield's commercial image.  Is there a plan in place for something like this?

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I would not spend resources going after national retailers.  They are not pioneers, they are followers.  They have the money to buy in AFTER the 'discovery' has been made.  They are not risk takers, particularly in urban areas.  They let the mom and pops do the heavy lifting, and then pouch from their success.

I would try to get the businesses already in Jax that have found success elsewhere in the metro area, and try to convince them to relocate or branch off into Springfield.  Second, I would look to rstate/regional retailers that are in FL, but not Jacksonville. Third, I would look for the start ups with the best business plans.   

Going these routes will also give you something unique that every other neighborhood can't duplicate.

This point is worth a discussion in its self, not just for Springfield, but any urban neighborhood.  Should we make national chains a priority over getting the existing buildings filled with local start-ups such as Carl's, Shantytown or Three Layers?  What can be done to give Springfield's commercial districts a different atmosphere from other typical districts?

Does anyone know of any urban retail districts in revitalizing neighborhoods across the country that were able to pull in national chains before establishing themselves as an unique locations featuring local retailers, start ups, mom & pops and local culture?    We could stand to learn a lot from the success and failures of similar neighborhoods in their efforts to strengthen their retail base.

Personally, I believe at least Main Street has always been a viable retail district.  The continued success of the national chain fast food restaurants in the area proves this.  However, I believe the key is being able to find entities with a business plan that have the ability to draw and appeal to customers who live outside of the historic district's boundaries.  The most successful establishments (regardless of whether they are national or local) operating in the area today all have that ability.  Those that rely on the neighborhood for total support seem to struggle a little more.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Steve on April 16, 2008, 10:10:53 AM
To be honest, I think that having more local places would help things a lot (BTW, I consider The Loop a local thing, because it's Jacksonville-Based).

Even if the National Retailers were expanding (yes, they are not right now), I don't see them going to springfield.  They are not risk takers (sorry, but there is a lot more risk here than St Johns Town Center).

With that said, do you want to turn Main St into a collection of chain restaraunts?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Eazy E on April 16, 2008, 11:46:04 AM
Anyone remember when Randy Moss or Warren Sapp was supposed to be opening some hip hop juice shop (their words, not mine) or something in the 'Field? Seemed analogous to the Magic plan.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 16, 2008, 12:34:23 PM
Lake, this seems to be probably the best bet going for the area between 10th and 26th on Main.

It could also work for Main, south of 10th, as well, considering North Main appears to be in better economic condition.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 16, 2008, 03:57:55 PM
There's nothing wrong with those reasons.  I'm totally against yuppifying, complete gentrification or white washing the entire neighborhood and its commercial districts.  My opinion of the situation is that Main is much larger than the historic district's imaginary boundaries and it should be marketed to its true demographic.  There is nothing wrong with embracing a little diversity.  To me that's what makes the neighborhood so desirable and culturally unique.  In my opinion, businesses that have the ability to pull from the surrounding neighborhoods, employment centers and through traffic should be promoted and encouraged to come in.  In addition, existing "non-yuppy" businesses like Chan's (and yes, even a few of the pawn shops) should be embraced and encouraged to be a part of a future vibrant commercial scene.

Anything short of that and you significantly limit the commercial corridor's potential for success, no matter what marketing strategy is put in place.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 16, 2008, 05:11:19 PM
I say bring on the gentrification in Springfield.  The slum approach certainly hasnt worked.

And, no one has to be excluded for the area to get nicer.  I just mean that more upscale people living/shopping in the area will help to preserve what is left of the neighborhood and will bring in new quality development.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 16, 2008, 09:41:50 PM
Stephendare,

And the words of the prophets are written on the subway walls--

Thank you.

Springfield is going through a class war, plain and simple. 

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 21, 2008, 02:51:09 PM
The corners of 9th and Main tell another story.

Three corners are bursting at the seams with customers.  One isnt.

Three corners charge white and black people the exact same prices for their drinks.  One doesnt.
Is there any proof of this ?
Do white or black people get the cheaper drinks ?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Driven1 on April 21, 2008, 02:53:04 PM
The corners of 9th and Main tell another story.

Three corners are bursting at the seams with customers.  One isnt.

Three corners charge white and black people the exact same prices for their drinks.  One doesnt.
Is there any proof of this ?
Do white or black people get the cheaper drinks ?

Please let me know when it is "white male"s night at 9th & Main.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on April 22, 2008, 05:04:53 PM
I don't care if someone is white, brown, yellow, black, red or purple. I don't care if someone earns $8,000 a year or $800,000 a year. And I really don't even want to know about other folks gender/sexual preferences. If I were blind, I'd be able to consider ALL 3 of these commonly-used classifiers Not My Business.

But... I do care if someone is earning a living illegally or otherwise engaging in illegal behavior in the environment where I am raising my offspring. B/c of my kids, I do care if people are openly flaunting behaviors or values that I don't want them exposed to until they are over 18, be it yelling down the street, littering, cursing, using drugs or hiring prostitutes (some people claim these things are part of "culture").

I don't consider this a race war (about skin color). I don't consider this a class war (about income). I consider it a values war.

I generally appreciate people with different values than mine (that's why I don't live in the 'burbs), provided they don't fit into the categories listed in my second paragraph. But because there seems to be a concentration of folks with these sub-par values in the Downtown neighborhoods -- make no mistake, there are SOME everywhere -- I've sometimes got a problem with it.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 22, 2008, 06:34:09 PM
Okay Zoo.

 Illegal behavior shouldn't be tolerated. 

As far as yelling and cursing, good luck making the world behave.  Yes, we are talking about acting differently around here than in the gated suburb communities.  Values?  I know some good loud people.  I know some good, spiritual people who cuss.  I know some sneaky evil people who behave themselves.  It is hard to tell until you get to know a person.

As far as your kids are concerned, start with the lesson that you can't judge a book by its cover and move from there. 

But, I thought Stephendare was talking about patronizing ALL neighborhood businesses.  The distinction between a "cool" biz and an "uncool" one is certainly a class war. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 22, 2008, 08:54:29 PM
Ok I have to disagree, patronizing Pawn Shops or not, has nothing to do with a class war. I go to the pawn shops on Main, to look for my stuff that has been stolen. Do I buy anything: Nope. I refuse to patronize a business that supports thieves in my neighborhood.  If they turned the stores around to more of a “flea market” (as Stephen alluded to) and stopped buying all our stolen stuff I would for sure shop there, not because of a class distinction, but because they would have a product I am interested in, that I won’t feel slimy for buying (or have to hide when I have neighbors over for a party in case it is theirs!).
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 22, 2008, 09:42:50 PM
Downtown Dweller,   If they are buying stolen goods, the law needs to be called.  They are required to keep records.  The ones you refuse to patronize, do you know for a fact that they are dealing in stolen goods?  Here again, illegal activity, when confronted with one's own eyes (as opposed to rumor-has-it) needs to be dealt with. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 22, 2008, 10:06:48 PM
So you promote the three legit pawn shops and soon pawn shop number 4 will want to be included...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on April 23, 2008, 10:51:24 AM
I cuss and am loud sometimes, too. But I don't do it in front of my kids -- when they pick up some of these things, and I'm sure they will from people in any one of their environments (whether it's our neighborhood, or their schools), I hope they'll at least do it out of rebellion, carelessness, and maybe even anger, rather than because they think it is part of their/my value system.

I do teach my kids to not judge a book by it's cover. When we're out in our neighborhood, we say "hi" to everyone who isn't engaging in activities that fit that paragraph of descriptions. When they ask why the person in front of us stinks, I answer that they just haven't had their bath yet today. When they ask who someone we say hi to is, I tell them their name if I know it, or I tell them it's a neighbor.

Again, I'm happy that my kids will be exposed to SOME values that may not be consistent with my own. But I still stand by my right as a parent to dislike openly displayed behaviors that fit into the categories in my previous post. For the Zoo family, it's not about race or class -- it is about values.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 23, 2008, 10:55:38 AM
In springfield's case, zoo.  Especially considering that the pawn shops own the buildings. How would you suggest that a positive outcome happen?

As long as Springfield continues to gentrify, the customers for these "shops" will eventually no longer live in the neighborhood.  Then, they will give in and sell their buildings at a profit and move their quasi-illicit (if they are dealing in stolen property they should be prosecuted) businesses elsewhere.  This is the way forward.  And, all neighbors now living in the Springfield who support the rehabilitation of the neighborhood should have an absolute boycott of these places.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 01:14:03 PM
Okay, let's have a look at those "family values" --geez...where have I heard THAT before?

  BTW, be careful of having the TV on, or watching movies with them in the house.  You certainly don't want to have the radio on while you are driving them to school.  No Folio either.

Speaking of stinky people -- that old lady that sits in the pew in front of me at church really wears too much flowery-smelling perfume.  It makes my eyes water.

Your space ends where you end.  Other people's space begins where they begin.  Unless they are breaking the law, their space is not your space.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 23, 2008, 03:44:00 PM
Ok, now I really have to say something. "My space" as you put it should not be intruded on by complete strangers that walk up to me and my small children and begin a conversation such as : "MFer....is that a MFing dog? Sh****T what kinda MFing dog is that? I aint never Fing seen a Fing Bi**ch like that MFer there"

And that is a nice conversation; this IS an infringement on my rights and the right of my family to take a walk down the sidewalk that btw, my taxes are paying to upkeep. Should people be able to do their own thing, OF COURSE, but NOT when it infringes on common decent rights of everyone else to enjoy the space. I get this kind of language when I am sitting in my own front yard, much less walking down the sidewalk, the aisle at the grocery store, or even at the playground in the park. "family values" as you put it may not mean much to you, but me....I have a responsibility to my children to ensure they grow up and can at lest speak the English language, and hopefully be an asset to society.


If you or anyone else wants to butcher the English language may I suggest doing it in your own car, home, or yard and keep it away from the rest of us, especially are small children. This is the epitome of selfishness if you ask me, but of course you didn’t. Since it appears everything to you is about class war, well if the application of common sense, curtsey and decency when addressing a five year old is a “class issue”  I am really naïve, I didn’t think poor  meant rude, selfish, and stupid, and no matter what you say I still don’t. ::)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 03:59:06 PM

If you or anyone else wants to butcher the English language may I suggest doing it in your own car, home, or yard and keep it away from the rest of us, especially are small children.

Okay, does anyone else see the irony in this statement?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 23, 2008, 04:20:22 PM
True, sorry everyone for getting so worked up. I just feel passionately about my children. I am really frustrated at the language they are exposed to, whether on the street or in their own yard. I have even heard little children their age using this same language in the park! I have been known to drop a few cuss words myself, but it isn’t par tof my everyday language, and I can ask a civil question without using the MF five times.

Sorry again for getting so heated
 :-* :-* :-* :-* :-*
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 04:25:14 PM
DD, I am also sorry if I trip over my soap-box.  I can be so booorrriing sometimes (and yes, everything seems to be a class war with me).  

The most beautiful thing happens to a man when he has a child.  (I'm mean usually here).  He becomes a hero and wants the world to be a better place for them.  So, that's just down right perfect as it should be.  BUT, when the little ones become a bit older, then can we argue over "family values?"
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 23, 2008, 04:32:54 PM
DD, I am also sorry if I trip over my soap-box.  I can be so booorrriing sometimes (and yes, everything seems to be a class war with me).  

The most beautiful thing happens to a man when he has a child.  (I'm mean usually here).  He becomes a hero and wants the world to be a better place for them.  So, that's just down right perfect as it should be.  BUT, when the little ones become a bit older, then can we argue over "family values?"

Absolutely, and you may be surprised in that I most likely will agree with your stance. ;)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 05:31:02 PM
this is the street with all the damned buildings on it, can anyone identify the pawn shops owned by the pawn shops?

(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-4290-p1090058.JPG)

That picture is just sad.  I think the Pawn shops are the least of the problems.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 06:24:11 PM
In reality, Springfield is a small section of Urban Jacksonville and Main Street is the lifeblood that connects a large population base between the Trout River and Downtown.  Economy and road construction aside (those are real issues Main must address), a viable business should be able to open up an establishment on Main and not have to rely only on the few people who live within the neighbohood's boundaries. 

The chains are there because they have a product that can pull from the surrounding neighborhoods.  Carl's and Jim Brown's, Three Layers and The Pearl all do the same and are very successful at what they do.  To me, having a viable business plan that attracts "outsiders" is the main key to success for any operation considering opening up on or near Main Street.  Having the power to pull in "outsiders" trumps the few band of fanatics who may decide to boycott your establishment for whatever reason.  If a few want to be like that, give them the finger, concentrate on perfecting your business and keep the cash rolling in.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 06:52:02 PM
then its not really a 'viable' retail market.

Every new business would have to be able to succeed even it were on the outskirts of town and you had to pass a checkpoint to get there.

It may not for a Ruth Chris or Urban Outfitters, but its just as viable as any other typical Jacksonville retail strip.  Ultimately, it depends on what you're selling and if you're in the right location for that intended demographic.  Go ask the workers at Popeye's or the Chicken Koop if its a viable market. 

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Those would be non location specific businesses and wouldnt effect whether or not 'springfield is a viable retail market'  As presently constituted, for the reasons listed.  It just isnt.

I disagree.  Popeye's would do half the business it does now if it were located on East 8th, near the railroad tracks.  There's also a reason they have a location there and not in Ponte Vedra or the Southside.  Its a viable market for what they are selling and the demographic they are targeting.  Ponte Vedra isn't, but it is for Ruth Chris.

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The proof is in the pudding.  and in the picture.

Carl's, the daycare and the pawn shops do good business.  Drop the lease rates (they are a bit high), help the business owners fix up their facades & signage, complete the streetscape, get the section 8 housing out of that old Klutho building and it will be just fine.

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It has all the makings of one though.

It is one.  It just may not be the type certain people want it to be.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 23, 2008, 09:07:42 PM
I mean to say that if it werent for the counterproductive politics of the neighborhood, like the lack of communication between the african american community and the SPAR renovating community, and the all out war and/or boycott of half the businesses on main street at any time, it would ALREADY be a thriving district.
Who is responsible for these "counterproductive politics" ?
What can be done to improve communication between the african american community and the SPAR renovating community (if there even is such a thing) ?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 09:11:50 PM
class war
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 09:12:13 PM
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Well lake, dont rely on all this confounded theory.

After all, it should be a shoe in.

Make a few calls and get some shops lined up.

Let me know how it turns out.

No need, I'll ask just the guys at Jim Brown's the next time I pick up a rib sandwich or a two piece chicken dinner at Popeyes on if they are being put out of business by Springfield's neighborhood politics.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 23, 2008, 09:14:50 PM
I miss Pic n Pay
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 23, 2008, 09:16:20 PM
gosh Stephen if it does't make good business sense what can you do? That looks bad.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 09:35:53 PM
There are two major issues facing Main Street in Springfield and neither have much to do with boycotts by Springfield residents.

1. Main Street Streetscape construction - the street is a mess right now and most of the parallel parking has currently been taken out for construction.  It also does not help that drivers can't make left turns on most streets through the construction zone.

2. Leasing rates & building conditions - Like the rest of Jacksonville, going rates for properties in Springfield got out of hand during the boom.  The high leasing rates limit the amount of mom & pop businesses that can open up shop in the middle of the construction zone.

Those that own the property they are in or have realistic leasing rates tend to do okay.  Any efforts to attract additional retail will need to overcome the two major items listed above.  What would you suggest as a method to deal with road construction, high leasing rates and deteriorating buildings?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 23, 2008, 09:42:28 PM
wait it out if you are strong enough and it makes sense
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 23, 2008, 10:02:21 PM
I miss the. caddy dealership der
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 10:15:44 PM
The rents on Main Street have tumbled.

Its not expensive anymore, the landlords just want tenants.

Most of them will charge no rent for a few months to allow repairs.

I don't think SPAR and SAMBA are aware of this.  I'll throw it out at the next board meeting and see what people have to say.

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Panera BBs and all of Hendricks Avenue had road construction going on for years, as did Boomtown for three years of operation on Main Street.

Popeye's, KFC, Chan's, etc. still do good business.  However, you can't deny its difficult for a mom & pop with limited capital to start up a business that can't be accessed by half the traffic driving between 4th & 12th Streets right now.

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It really is about the street traffic.

Its the reason that the leases were so divorced from reality.

Commercial Leases are based on the number of potential customers a person might get.

LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION! isnt just an empty marketing phrase.

There is no street traffic on main street.

Fix that, and you fix everything.

There's a decent amount of street traffic, according the Metro Edge Study.  However, it is limited because half the traffic can't directly access business locations located across the street because of the continuous string of closed intersections.

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You cant fix that by boycotting 40 percent of the shops, refusing to frequent another 10 percent and restricting who is allowed in the remaining (empty) 50 percent of the properties.

The Springfielders are beginning to get restless on this issue though, giving credit where credit is due.

I was surprised to find that the residents are VERY aware that a business that doesnt produce activity and street traffic is undesireable.  I was actually proud of the springfielders that all of them would groan and grit their teeth everytime a new tax returns place opens. 

Despite the professional cleanups and the shiny plastic back lit signs, the springfielders are savvy enough to know that these are merely neutral tenants who contribute nothing to the neighborhood.

So there's hope.

Who's presently getting boycotted out of Springfield?  The community is also pretty diverse.  What are the number of residents in your opinion who are boycotting businesses on Main Street?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 10:46:01 PM
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There's a decent amount of street traffic, according the Metro Edge Study.  However, it is limited because half the traffic can't directly access business locations located across the street because of the continuous string of closed intersections.

Walking street traffic.  Passersby.

There's no walking street traffic on Southside, Merrill or Edgewood, yet they have a good number of businesses.  Just to make sure we're on the same page, what type of businesses are you referring too.

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As you can see from the posts, nearly 100 percent of the residents are boycotting the pawn shops.

What?  Three or four people?  The pawn shops appear to be doing great business, so whatever unofficial boycott that has been assembled is not working.

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Samba is a pretty small organization, Lake.  I dont think there is a single main street merchant on it is there?

SAMBA members on Main Street include Old Time Hardware, Carl's Main Street Restaurant, Fortec Jacksonville, Fresh Ministries, Operation New Hope, Pasco, SPAR and Viva Computers.  Looking at the list, we definately need to go out and recruit more businesses on Main to be a part of SAMBA.

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Ian is about as close as you have.  And even shantytown is considered 'too edgy' by some in the neighborhood.  Not just 'oh that edgy place over on 6th?  Yeah Ive seen it, is it pretty good?", but "That Shantytown is a little too edgy for people who havent seen our neighborhood before, first impressions are so important after all" consideration.

No matter what type of business you operate, there will always be someone who may not like it.  However, that person is most likely not in the target demographic your business needs to succeed.  Thus any boycott by such a person should not hurt your business.  I stopped by there tonight. Shantytown appears to be doing just fine.

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And you have hit on the point Lake.  In a neighborhood with thousands of people within walking and biking range, why should any mom and pop struggle?

I explained before.  High leasing rates, poorly marketed buildings, blighted buildings (how long has it taken you to get your building up to code, for example), a construction zone, etc. all play a role.  Boycotts don't.  Btw, despite a number of people living in the area, it does not mean that they all will be attracted to any business that opens up nearby.  This is where a business owner should know their target market.  Popeyes and Jim Browns do and both pull in walk up as well as drive thru traffic.

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But trust me on the sunscreen, lake.  Walking traffic will cure what ails it.

Sure, all the traffic in the world helps.  The more visibility the better.  There's no argument here.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 11:02:27 PM
Low blow.  Do you even know what images you're grabbing?  The broken window image is of a warehouse off Liberty Street in the warehouse district.  Anyway, can you answer my questions in my last few posts?  I would really like to know.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: downtownparks on April 23, 2008, 11:02:33 PM
Lake, You should get Mike and A&A Auto People love him. Also, I can give you the number to the lady who owns the building they recently put glass in at 5th and Main. It looks like she may already have perspective tenants based on the signs hanging in the windows.

I was in there the other day. They are doing a pretty decent job, and when I spoke to the owner, she indicated her problem moving forward was actually the city, not the residents. In short, she was approved for money from the NW trust fund, and it was apparently yanked, so she had to bootstrap the whole project.

Anyway, I personally would support almost any business. I have been in the pawnshops, and I have to say, considering that their stuff is all used second hand, and in some cases of ill-gotten origins, their prices just werent good. Why would I spent $200 on a ladder covered with paint and dents when I can go spend $225 for a brand new one? Pawn shops prices just arent as great as is believed.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 11:04:23 PM
Thanks, Downtownparks.  We'll definately get in touch with them.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: downtownparks on April 23, 2008, 11:15:40 PM
BTW, I think that Stephen does make one great point with his pictures. Jacksonville residents are easy scared away. If its a little dark, a little gritty, they assume they are about to be jumped at any minute and die. When the reality is, while crime is present, it is hardly pervasive, and I wouldnt exactly call it dangerous. The resident of Jax at large need to recognize this.

In this regard, the night time venues are slowly but surely changing minds. The Pearl brings kids in the way that Milkbar used to on Adams. At the pinnacle of the Milkbars success, it was the ONLY place open at night on Adams, and half of the street was boarded up.

Shanty has done wonders and is active on most nights, and while the bike store and record store in the old darty building probably aren't making money, the landlord has made it workable for them, and as a result, they are brining in more faces for more event. There is a synergy with Shanty, and there is a lot to be said for what you have called clustering.

Even the dreaded 9th and Main, with its ups and downs and controversy, it starting to help that process again. I wont say every meal and every show is a knock out of the park, the bottom line is, people are responding generally positively.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2180/2438122628_396c4e0743.jpg)

Whats cool is, these places are all working together to make things better in general. In 5 years, the kids going to these bars and shows will remember, as I do of my Milkbar days, not how crappy adams street was, but of how much fun it was. They wont be nearly as hesitant to come to the community, and in general, the perception of Springfield and downtown will be a little more positive.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 23, 2008, 11:28:50 PM
Sure Main is no Five Points, but lets not paint the picture that its a wasteland either.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/P1080367.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/P1080351.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/P1080353.jpg)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1751-p1030775.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-4277-p1090117.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-4291-p1080986.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1960-p1040130.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1981-p1040147.JPG)

Its obvious through these images that there are places that are successfully operating on Main Street.  Instead of focusing on the negatives of Main, maybe we should try identifying these existing businesses as anchors and finding a way to use the vacant properties as a way to link them.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 23, 2008, 11:48:24 PM
This isn't the 1st time Main has had that kind of construction, nor is Main the only street to have that level of development to the detriment of the business in the area.  One doesn't have to look back very far to remember San Jose, Baymeadows, Old Kings, Beach, Atlantic.  Yes it put a hurt on the business owners, but heck, that's progress.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 23, 2008, 11:49:22 PM
If I could play mediator here (it is a stretch, I know), I think Stephen and Lake are talking past each other here.  Stephen primarily wants the Springfield stretch of Main Street to be a cool, hip commercial extension of Springfield which aids the neighborhood's resurgence.  Lake wants this too but he is more interested in the strip being rejuvenated than with exactly what will be the mix of end users and their customers.  Both have good ideas but slightly different goals. 

Anyway, I think there is room for both visions on Main but there is not room for both visions, and Section 8 housing, crack ho's, crazies, etc.  Main Street needs to be cleaned up for the surrounding communities and to draw in suburbanites IMO.  It will have to be a gradual process involving a lot of patience though.  Unfortunately, in some cases we will just have to wait out these slum lords and pawn shops.  Eventually they will die or retire and the buildings will be sold to someone with class and good taste.  Just keep the faith in the meantime and keep your noses to the grindstones.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 23, 2008, 11:57:07 PM
Pigs are flying
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 12:30:12 AM
If I could play mediator here (it is a stretch, I know), I think Stephen and Lake are talking past each other here.  Stephen primarily wants the Springfield stretch of Main Street to be a cool, hip commercial extension of Springfield which aids the neighborhood's resurgence.  Lake wants this too but he is more interested in the strip being rejuvenated than with exactly what will be the mix of end users and their customers.  Both have good ideas but slightly different goals. 

Anyway, I think there is room for both visions on Main but there is not room for both visions, and Section 8 housing, crack ho's, crazies, etc.  Main Street needs to be cleaned up for the surrounding communities and to draw in suburbanites IMO.  It will have to be a gradual process involving a lot of patience though.  Unfortunately, in some cases we will just have to wait out these slum lords and pawn shops.  Eventually they will die or retire and the buildings will be sold to someone with class and good taste.  Just keep the faith in the meantime and keep your noses to the grindstones.

the world can officially end now, lake.
River is making more sense than either of us, and is acting as the cool head and a mediator.

And you are right of course, River, thanks for interjecting some clarity.

I'm not hot, it was just a good old fashioned debate.  Anyway, I had a whole response typed and ready to go before reading the last post.  I deleted it because River is right in that we're talking about two different things.  You're focusing on a smaller specific market (like a retailer) and I'm focusing on an overall grand scheme that's larger than the neighborhood (like a planner). 

The scene along Louisville's Bardstown Road will give you a better example of what I've been envisioning.  Let me go ahead and upload the images.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 12:44:40 AM
Bardstown Road images - Louisville, KY

This is a +4 four mile stretch through a number of neighborhoods with a diverse collection of businesses in a pedestrian friendly area a few miles from Downtown Louisville.  There's a mix of old and new, urban and suburban, local and chain stores.  If applied to Main, this length would go from the Landing to the Trout River. 

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-3.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-2.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-1.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-6.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-5.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-4.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-10.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-9.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-8.jpg)
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v84/lakelander/lou-7.jpg)

With this concept, there's room for everybody of all cultures and races.  Notice, even the chain's like McDonald's enhance the scene by offering outdoor seating.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 24, 2008, 12:49:43 AM
god those power lines are hidious.  But, yes, that's springfield in a few years I'm sure.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 12:51:29 AM
Just goes to show, vibrant districts are not about streetscapes, brick pavers and palm trees.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on April 24, 2008, 12:59:09 AM
does your plan include BRT lanes in both directions?  please so no no no.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 01:29:48 AM
I was thinking elevated BRT.  You'll ride it and you'll do so with a smile on your face. Gas will soon be $20 a gallon and everyone will be giving away their kids away to jump on one of our futuristic buses.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 05:51:36 AM
  Eventually they will die or retire and the buildings will be sold to someone with class and good taste.  Just keep the faith in the meantime and keep your noses to the grindstones.


Did I say "class war?"
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 07:25:08 AM
& as I recall from my visits to Boomtown, that place was fun, funky, WELCOMING, diverse, but I don't think anyone could say it had "good taste."
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsujax on April 24, 2008, 07:56:50 AM
Well, we already have the Kentucky Fried Chicken and a McDonalds on 8th St, so I would say we are well on our way.......to becoming like those pictures you posted Lake.  I do agree with Riverside, we have got to get Main St cleaned up. The landscpaing is nice, but that alone will not attract businesses, just look at A Phillip Randolph as an example.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 08:18:07 AM
I think everyone agrees that it could use some clean up.  The streetscape, when its complete, should help with the visual image, but more emphasis will need to be placed on marketing and financing solutions for business and property owners to renovate their structures and buy into some sort of idea that sets Main Street apart from the rest of the city.  In Louisville, Bardstown Road's unique signage, architectural diversity and buildings (both suburban and urban) properly addressing the sidewalk with pedestrian friendly concepts helps give that corridor a unique feel. 

For example, we have Jim Brown's and 9th & Main on one corner.  Both are assets to the community, but the visual feel and environment of that corner would feel completely different if both had outdoor dining sections.  The same goes for Carl's and Chan's.  Right now, with the construction, its understandable that this isn't the case, but when the streetscape is complete, either SPAR, SAMBA or both should have a plan in place that encourages existing and new businesses to invest in pedestrian friendly things like creative business signage, facade lighting and outdoor dining, etc.

Stephen mentioned earlier that foot traffic was low.  We'll no one should expect high foot traffic in a place that doesn't give pedestrians much reason to be there.  People attract people, so if we could start with helping the existing businesses better embrace the sidewalks, that would be a strong move in the direction of building up foot traffic.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 10:50:02 AM
I think everyone agrees that it could use some clean up.  The streetscape, when its complete, should help with the visual image, but more emphasis will need to be placed on marketing and financing solutions for business and property owners to renovate their structures and buy into some sort of idea that sets Main Street apart from the rest of the city.  In Louisville, Bardstown Road's unique signage, architectural diversity and buildings (both suburban and urban) properly addressing the sidewalk with pedestrian friendly concepts helps give that corridor a unique feel. 

For example, we have Jim Brown's and 9th & Main on one corner.  Both are assets to the community, but the visual feel and environment of that corner would feel completely different if both had outdoor dining sections.  The same goes for Carl's and Chan's.  Right now, with the construction, its understandable that this isn't the case, but when the streetscape is complete, either SPAR, SAMBA or both should have a plan in place that encourages existing and new businesses to invest in pedestrian friendly things like creative business signage, facade lighting and outdoor dining, etc.

Stephen mentioned earlier that foot traffic was low.  We'll no one should expect high foot traffic in a place that doesn't give pedestrians much reason to be there.  People attract people, so if we could start with helping the existing businesses better embrace the sidewalks, that would be a strong move in the direction of building up foot traffic.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 10:59:12 AM
oops.

Lakelander, outdoor dining is a great idea! How could the community encourage the owners of these places to do this?  Nothing tells the world that people think the area is safe like people relaxing in front of it, out in the open.  There would have to be a fund to pay the regulars (like Jimmy for example) to stay away from the customers.  Nothing would scare an outsider more than Jimmy walking up and screaming CIGARETTE!  But, I'll bet $10.00 a day would keep him away. 

Other than the Jimmy-factor, it is a great idea.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 24, 2008, 11:21:38 AM
I think are multiple ways to deal with the Jimmys of Springfield and Downtown.  These include everything from police patrol on foot to outdoor dining screened with fences or planters.  I have two images I want to show of sidewalk cafes in Toronto and Philly that use landscaping and plants as buffers, but I'm away from my home computer.  However, here are a few that have been posted in comparison threads on this site.

(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1314-p1010616.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1186-p1000107.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1413-p1000958.jpg)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-1530-p1020358.JPG)
(http://www.metrojacksonville.com/photos/thumbs/lrg-3071-p1020230.jpg)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 24, 2008, 12:13:13 PM
  Eventually they will die or retire and the buildings will be sold to someone with class and good taste.  Just keep the faith in the meantime and keep your noses to the grindstones.


Did I say "class war?"

I was referring to class which cannot be purchased, not middle, working or upper class. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 03:41:37 PM


I was referring to class which cannot be purchased, not middle, working or upper class. 
[/quote]

I was just kidding, sort of.  It's a subtle thing, sort of.  But a problem. And a problem for me too.

I had a family living next to me from the mountains of New York state.  There were no less than 10 of them, loosely related, living in a 1000 square foot house.  The called each other every foul name they could think of, often chasing each other down the street to do so.  They had three of the sweetest little girls, with curly blonde hair, who listened to their father's mouth.  (And yes, I at times asked him to think about the language he used in front of his little ones).  All of the family knew our names, our pets' names, asked about our day, kept us company outside (okay bummed cigarettes too).  They helped out whenever we were doing anything.  Mowed our lawn if they had the lawn mower out and when our dog died out on the street, came to us, actually crying, and said "that is so messed up."  I'll never forget the sadness they felt on our behalf.

I am ashamed to say, I never could remember their names...

I was a little relieved when they moved, but I know that they had a right to run up and down the street and cuss at each other if they felt like it.  They also loudly made up  :) and loudly loved each other.  If they felt like living their lives that way, what right do I have to demand they conform to my white middle class notions of correct behavior?  At times I was uncomfortable, often entertained, often disgusted, but I love that I live in a neighborhood which has such characters in it.  I would be bored beyond tears in a gated community with manicured lawns. 

And BTW, they had absolutely no class or good taste.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on April 24, 2008, 06:08:49 PM
Stephen, as part of your block by block plan...

For the pawn shops could it be as simple as maintaining the legit business but changing the name to something that does not imply "pawn shop"? IE: Music Matters, All Things Eclectic, This & That, You Want It We Got It...okay business names may not be my forte but you get the idea.

They could all have a "We Buy & Sell" sign in the window but hopefully lose the pawn shop stigma.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 24, 2008, 06:37:55 PM
I was just kidding, sort of.  It's a subtle thing, sort of.  But a problem. And a problem for me too.

I had a family living next to me from the mountains of New York state.  There were no less than 10 of them, loosely related, living in a 1000 square foot house.  The called each other every foul name they could think of, often chasing each other down the street to do so.  They had three of the sweetest little girls, with curly blonde hair, who listened to their father's mouth.  (And yes, I at times asked him to think about the language he used in front of his little ones).  All of the family knew our names, our pets' names, asked about our day, kept us company outside (okay bummed cigarettes too).  They helped out whenever we were doing anything.  Mowed our lawn if they had the lawn mower out and when our dog died out on the street, came to us, actually crying, and said "that is so messed up."  I'll never forget the sadness they felt on our behalf.

I am ashamed to say, I never could remember their names...

I was a little relieved when they moved, but I know that they had a right to run up and down the street and cuss at each other if they felt like it.  They also loudly made up  :) and loudly loved each other.  If they felt like living their lives that way, what right do I have to demand they conform to my white middle class notions of correct behavior?  At times I was uncomfortable, often entertained, often disgusted, but I love that I live in a neighborhood which has such characters in it.  I would be bored beyond tears in a gated community with manicured lawns. 

And BTW, they had absolutely no class or good taste.

Who says rednecks are only in the South?   ;D
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 24, 2008, 07:29:34 PM

Of course why not take the imaginary lemons and turn them into lemonade.  Repackage the Pawn Shops as something cool and funky.

That is a really great idea.  How could you sell it to them?  Especially if they are doing okay now?  A facade grant would be so wonderful.  I suppose those days are gone.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfield Girl on April 28, 2008, 11:20:33 AM
Reading this thread is making me crazy. I hope you people are not so naive as to think that SPAR has all the power you credit them with. I have been in Springfield for a while now and am pretty involved. I have only heard of one threatened boycott of a business and it was a last ditch attempt by a small group of neighbors to get a business owner to quit renting to sex offenders. For every one person who is involved with SPAR in Springfield there are probably at least 50 others who aren't. We are a very diverse neighborhood of individuals that have different likes, interests and needs. There is not some retarded conspiracy going on. As individuals we are busy living our lives and trying to effect small changes where we can to better our neighborhood. I have no power to force businesses to beautify their properties or sell a product I am interested in but I do have the power to not patronize them. Not needing or desiring the services of a business is not same as boycotting them. The only thing that is constant is change and businesses must adapt to their changing clientel to succeed, not the other way around.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 11:25:45 AM
Good post.  I also don't agree that any neighborhood group in Springfield has that type of power. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 28, 2008, 11:36:30 AM
Well, to be fair Main ST., the street itself looks bad right now, but that is because they are supposed to be fixing and beautifying it. I am hopeful that once this work is complete we will have much more commercial interest. After the Eastside of 8th was upgraded we got the coffee shop, karate school, and I am hearing a pizza or Italian restaurant is looking at 7th and Walnut. Some of the key commercial properties are owned by individuals who are investing for the long-term, asking rent and/or sales prices based on future value speculation. Steps are being taken to improve our commercial corridors; we just have to be a little patient. I agree with Springfield Girl in that I won’t patronize a business I don’t feel comfortable at (the renting to pedophiles) or that I don’t need, want, or like the goods/services being offered. Isn’t that how the market works? If no one wants your product or likes you store, or service, or prices you change or go out of business. I have no problem voicing my desires to businesses, it is their option to respond or not. I am still very hopeful that once all the construction is done we will start seeing great improvements in our commercial offerings.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 11:48:45 AM
Good post.  I also don't agree that any neighborhood group in Springfield has that type of power. 
Every Merchant.  EVERY merchant had the same opinion.   Even Jerome Brown.  The support that should have been there from the neighborhood wasnt.  I don't say this out of bitterness or anything other than observation, and as I said, for Boomtown, this wasnt a problem.

What type of support are the businesses looking for?  Marketing, promotion, monetary, etc.?   How can a group like SAMBA grow to help these businesses, in your opinion?

Also, what's the true population of Springfield and how does it demographically compare with the neighborhood when you came in years ago?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 28, 2008, 11:50:33 AM
Like an
Organic Grocery Store.- Yep absolutely!!!
2 Jazz Clubs.- DITTO
An Indie Movie Theatre.-For sure
3 sit down restaurants with great ratings from all the food critics.-once a week?
9 art galleries.-Yep
2 performance halls.-Depends on what's playing
A Book Shop-Oh YES
A Wine Shop-Mmmm Hmmm
A great bakery- YES,YES,YES!!!!
Three more espresso bars-We have a great one already, keep in mind we aren't Ginormous
An arts studio loft-?????
A five points style furniture store.- ????
A beauty salon.- Decent? Does MY hair????
An Antique store.-We have a couple

?

If they all opened next year, Would that get the support of the neighborhood?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 11:53:33 AM
Like an
Organic Grocery Store.
2 Jazz Clubs.
An Indie Movie Theatre.
3 sit down restaurants with great ratings from all the food critics.
9 art galleries.
2 performance halls.
A Book Shop
A Wine Shop
A great bakery
Three more espresso bars
An arts studio loft
A five points style furniture store.
A beauty salon.
An Antique store.

?

If they all opened next year, Would that get the support of the neighborhood?

Would a portion of this answer rely on the level of service or quality of product given?  For example, Main Street Bakery failed, but Chan's, Shantytown and the Pearl have succeeded.

Can the neighborhood support this many establishments without additional support from those living outside of the historic district's boundaries?  Is the population density high enough for all of these businesses to rely on neighborhood only?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 12:04:54 PM
ah, thanks for the reminder, Lake.  The French Pantry did daily deliveries for 6 months to the front of Boomtown.  Some of the best bread to be made in the city of Jacksonville.  We were their only northside drop off.  But I forgot about the Main Street Bakery phase of that building.

Let me ammend that list:

Like an
Organic Grocery Store.
2 Jazz Clubs.
An Indie Movie Theatre.
3 sit down restaurants with great ratings from all the food critics.
9 art galleries.
2 performance halls.
A Book Shop
A Wine Shop
A great bakery
Three more espresso bars
An arts studio loft
A five points style furniture store.
A beauty salon.
An Antique store.
3 Bakeries
A seafood Restaurant and Fish Market.
A West African food store
etc.....



That's a pretty huge list.  I bought my property in mid-2005 and most of this list was not there, unless there's some type of overlapping (ex. businesses opening and closing at 9th & Main and other locations).  Did they close prior to 2005?

Why did the neighborhood and the surrounding areas not support these businesses?  Was it the actual residents banding together and boycotting, city facade grants bankrupting them or shady landlords? 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 01:06:34 PM
Rita Reagan aside (you didn't have to throw her under the bus), I think you have to go into detail for someone to fully understand your point of view.

I don't know if the residents ("neighborhood") of Springfield can be blamed for all these failures, especially for Craig's actions with his properties.  It seems there were multiple issues that caused many of these businesses to either fail, succeed or relocate.  How good did these businesses draw from thru traffic and surrounding neighborhoods like Downtown, New Springfield or Brentwood? 

You mentioned a while back that Five Points did not rely only on Riverside for support.  Why isn't it possible for an urban business district to grow along Main that's not totally based off the support of a few neighborhood blocks in a community that's probably half as dense as it was during its heyday? 

Is it possible to work with/promote the existing businesses on Main to help the street fill in?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Lunican on April 28, 2008, 01:20:09 PM
The fast food restaurants seem to be operating without any drama. In fact, they seem busy all hours of the day and night.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 01:31:15 PM
The fast food restaurants seem to be operating without any drama. In fact, they seem busy all hours of the day and night.

Interesting.  They (the fast food guys) can't even make it downtown, but have found long term success in Springfield.  I don't if the "neighborhood" has the funds to make improvements to businesses that can't afford to do on their own.  In financial terms, this would probably need to be addressed on a city/state level through the programs offered for being located in an empowerment and enterprise zone.  Where the neighborhood groups like SPAR and SAMBA can help would be making this information better accessible to new and existing landlords and business owners.  However, this is something that is currently being addressed as we speak.  Marketing and promotion are other areas where the neighborhood groups can help.

I'll have to take a look at Springfield's demographics.  At this point, it should be diverse enough to the point where a boycott of certain businesses by all of the residents is not possible.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 02:28:45 PM
'turf' definitions?  How would you suggest the neighborhood should help small businesses get set up financially?  
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 02:30:45 PM
Quote
um yeah, no doubt.  The fast food restaurants have had thirty years to develop a following.

How long do you think it will take the fast food restaurants to come back to downtown?  Which is easier to do business in?  Downtown or Springfield?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 02:34:49 PM
Quote
Create street traffic (walking) and support the businesses. 

Isn't this catch 22?  You can't really create street traffic in a construction zone littered with vacant car lots and boarded up buildings?  Its difficult to force people to walk to no where.  What are some innovative ways to create street traffic in the meantime?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 03:30:54 PM
Quote
Now, be truthful, did you really pay any attention to the buildings?

I did.  But you know my industry.  They are always the first thing I notice.  I would be comfortable in every environment but the last, but I get your point.  I don't think there is anyone out there who would say Main Street does not have a hostile image, outside of the section around 9th & Main were the fast food restaurants are clustered or up near MLK where there are a growing number of businesses moving in.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 28, 2008, 03:41:28 PM
It will take a little more then people walking past vacant car lots and buildings, but it would be a good start.  The most difficult part would be to get people to walk along Main, as opposed to through the neighborhood.  From personal experience, the neighborhood walks offer a lot better scenery and interacting activity.  You almost feel like you're breaking the law walking down Main, south of 5th Street, especially if you try and cross mid block.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on April 28, 2008, 08:17:20 PM
I love Springfield too.  Sometimes, though, it does remind me of high school. 

Wedgies, whispers in the cafeteria, long walks down dark hallways.

Go team.

And, I'm cool.  I can only imagine how the uncool feel  ;D

The unofficial boycotting of businesses is an extension of the cliquey attitude towards residents.  If you want to be a Springfield resident in good standing you go here, but not there.  You believe this, but not that.  You join this club, but not that.

& Stephendare, you keep on caring, buddy.  And thanks for the videos.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ocklawaha on April 29, 2008, 12:33:24 AM
Sad part is Stephen, in a city of this size, are you and I the only ones who will listen to or support such art?
It would make for a damn funny JTA-Streetcar parody. Speaking of cool acts, did you ever see the YOUTUBE with Bowiechick doing "Golden Years?" Completely off the wall, but 5 star perfection! Much of it looks like she could have filmed in Jax circa 1922.


Ocklawaha
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ocklawaha on April 29, 2008, 12:40:01 AM
Try this on:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=6IopeRLiIAk

Ocklawaha
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 29, 2008, 10:27:34 AM
Like an
Organic Grocery Store.- Yep absolutely!!!
2 Jazz Clubs.- DITTO
An Indie Movie Theatre.-For sure
3 sit down restaurants with great ratings from all the food critics.-once a week?
9 art galleries.-Yep
2 performance halls.-Depends on what's playing
A Book Shop-Oh YES
A Wine Shop-Mmmm Hmmm
A great bakery- YES,YES,YES!!!!
Three more espresso bars-We have a great one already, keep in mind we aren't Ginormous
An arts studio loft-?????
A five points style furniture store.- ????
A beauty salon.- Decent? Does MY hair????
An Antique store.-We have a couple

?

If they all opened next year, Would that get the support of the neighborhood?

Well the neighborhood didnt.  They were all open 3 years ago.
I don't think it's fair to blame the closure of all these businesses on lack of neighborhood support. I also take offense to the generalized statement of neighborhood boykott as I personally never boykotted a single business.

How many of these businesses really had a business plan in place when they opened which showed a chance of survival ? Did it show they could survive with Springfield resident alone ? What was done to promote the services outside of SPR and draw in additional crowd ? What makes the business appealing to customers outside of SPR to drive here rather than frequent other businesses ?

How many customers a day does a business need to survive ? How many residents of Springfield dine out daily ? Now divide that number by the number of existing restaurants.

As a customer it is not my duty to babysit a business. I will go there initially a few times to try it out. If they run frequently out of their specials, can't serve the signature item on their menu, have inconsistent hours (closed without notice even though should be opened), have below average quality, have unacceptable long times to get the food delivered or the food arrives cold, I will stop going there. But remember, this is not a boykott. It is my right as customer to frequent the businesses which deliver the services I want in the way I like. It's called free market.

Businesses need to put forth their best effort right when they open. You only have one chance to make a first impression.

If you run your business like a casual hobby, show up when you like, don't care if you run out of products (especially eggs for a place serving breakfast), don't pay attention to your customers needs but rather to your own social life, don't be surprised if your business does not make it.

I am getting really tired of the constant whining and blaming things on someone else.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 29, 2008, 12:17:53 PM
Quote
How many customers a day does a business need to survive ? How many residents of Springfield dine out daily ? Now divide that number by the number of existing restaurants.
Depends on the business obviously.

20 people consuming an average of 10 bucks a piece will generally do it for a small establishment (that is, to survive)  Six weekdays, 1200 a week, 4800 in sales total.  1200 in monthly expenses (rent and electric) 1200 in stock and inventory, 1200 in labor, and another 1200 in business expenses (taxes, telephone, supplies, cleaning and advertising). If 10 of those customers come from outside the neighborhood (which they do) then 60 customers a week at 10 bucks or 30 customers a week at 20 bucks per person.

So lets say that there were four restaurants in Springfield of the sit down variety.  That would be 120 springfielders a week total for all four to achieve bare survival, providing that 50% of the customer base comes from elsewhere.
How often do people eat out? An average of one out of five meals consumed by Americans — 4.2 meals per week — is prepared in a commercial setting, according to Meal Consumption Behavior — 2000,* a new National Restaurant Association report. An average of 14.4 meals per week are privately prepared, and the remaining 2.4 meals are skipped.

In 2006 there were 1777 residential addresses in SPR. The average number of adults per household was 1.8. 70% of households had no children.
So for simplicity assume that 1777 * 1.8 * 4.2 = 13434 meals are eaten out by SPR residents a week. This of course includes breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Now it would be interesting to know how many meals are consumed outside of SPR. At this point I would venture a guess of 80%. Feel free to correct me here if you feel otherwise. This would leave roughly 2686 meals for SPR per week.

These meals now get split up among the different restaurants we have in SPR. I am not disregarding all the other businesses in SPR but restaurants I am most familiar with as I like to eat, cook and dine out.

HOLA MEXICAN RESTAURANT INC
TOMMY MATTHEWS CONVIENCE STORE
EAST 8TH ST SANDWICH SHOP
CARL'S MAIN ST RESTAURANT
NOSH (9TH&MAIN)
JEROME BROWN BBQ #2
POPEYES CHICKEN & BISCUIT #157
KFC K021005
CHICKEN KOOP WINGS & THINGS
FINE STYLE CARIBBEAN RESTAURANT

Overall there are 88 licensed food places in the 32206 zip code (many of them just outside of SPR) who also draw a considerable number of diners their way.

So lets say the 2686 meals get divided up only on the 10 SPR places. This leaves 268 for each if they are evenly distributed (which as we all know they are not). So some places will struggle for bare survival.

I would also like to challenge the $1200 per month in labor. If you divide that among 5 staff (exec chef, line cook, pass line and 2 wait staff) and want to have the manager/owner also to make some profit I don't really see this happening.

The $1200 for stock and inventory only translates to 25% food cost. Industry average is 30-35%.

I am all for positive thinking and want successful restaurants here. All I am trying to show is that SPR alone can not support them. They need to appeal to customers outside of SPR. We also have quite some amount of established competition here already. And the good residents of SPR also needs to support the established businesses, correct ?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 29, 2008, 12:38:25 PM
Well, Alex.  The convenience store sounds like good eatin.
The convenience store is Tommy's breakfast place on Walnut. I heard from many that it's rather delicious. I have no idea why he has a convenience store listed with DBPR. I used DBPR data so I would not forget to list a place.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on April 29, 2008, 01:47:30 PM
Well, ya’ll are just talking restaurants. What about other shops, a hair shop that does all types of hair, some clothing shops, perhaps an organic grocery (Stephen what organic grocery was in Springfield?), something else to help pull people here. I know when I travel out of the neighborhood I go where there are multiple stores I can visit, otherwise why travel?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 29, 2008, 03:29:40 PM
Quote
How many customers a day does a business need to survive ? How many residents of Springfield dine out daily ? Now divide that number by the number of existing restaurants.
Depends on the business obviously.

20 people consuming an average of 10 bucks a piece will generally do it for a small establishment (that is, to survive)  Six weekdays, 1200 a week, 4800 in sales total.  1200 in monthly expenses (rent and electric) 1200 in stock and inventory, 1200 in labor, and another 1200 in business expenses (taxes, telephone, supplies, cleaning and advertising). If 10 of those customers come from outside the neighborhood (which they do) then 60 customers a week at 10 bucks or 30 customers a week at 20 bucks per person.

So lets say that there were four restaurants in Springfield of the sit down variety.  That would be 120 springfielders a week total for all four to achieve bare survival, providing that 50% of the customer base comes from elsewhere.

There are a few thousand springfielders, so this would boil down to about 5 or 10 percent of the neighborhood eating out once a week.  If it were a factory or a watch works, or an assigned duty, (joking of course) then the next time you would have to eat out before everyone had their turn would be 4 months. 

The upshot of course is this.  With full neighborhood support as a resident, you would only have to eat out once every four months and the basic bills of the restaurants would be paid.  If you ate out once every two months, the owners might be able to pay a car note and their household bill.  Once a month and the restaurants would be semi swanky.

Once a week, and people would start having to go to rehab.

Its shocking isnt it?


I hear you, believe me, I really do.  I just don't think the "SPAR" types ("SPAR types" this tells me the target of discussion revolves around a certain segment of Springfield's population, instead of the whole neighborhood) are large enough in numbers to have a meaningful impact. 

Here are some areas I believe, that limit their impact based on the quoted comment above, along with AlexS's response.

1. There are already places drawing some of their support (Burrito Gallery, Chew, London Bridge, etc.), however, they are scattered throughout the neighborhood and urban core.

2. Even the places you discounted like Jim Brown's, Carl's, Chan's, Subway, KFC and the Caribbean restaurants north of 14th, pull in some of those meals (not all "SPAR types" boycott these places).  For the numbers posted to work, are you calling for the "SPAR types" supporting these places on an occassional basis to stop and support those that rely only on the neighborhood, regardless of if its a product a specific person wants or not?

3. The "SPAR types" (vocal, but small in numbers) don't all have the same likes.  No matter what comes on line, a portion will support it, but another portion may not for a variety of reasons.  In this essence, Springfield is no different from any other neighborhood in the city. 

Ex. I'll eat at a place serving decent meals for under $10/person, moreso then I will one that will cost me $20.  Its nothing against the establishment or its owner, it deals more with how it affects my personal budget.  I eat at Ruth Chris once a year because I can't justify paying so much for a meal on a regular basis, but that doesn't mean I'm boycotting them.  On the other hand, someone else may have the reverse opinion of both establishments, but want the same as me as far as a commercial district goes......vibrancy.

Until Springfield densifies (and its got a long way to go, imo), new businesses stand a much better chance of appealing to a larger urban core area demographic (ex. like The Pearl, Shantytown, Three Layers, etc.), which in the process will also pull in some "SPAR types" support along the way.

So to me, a major key would be finding a way to make the area have an "unique sense of place and feel" that appeals, not only to nearby residents (both black and white/rich and poor), but the urban core neighbors and visitors as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on April 29, 2008, 06:41:25 PM
What about the idea of creating your "community of place" at 8th and Walnut?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: downtownparks on April 29, 2008, 07:18:02 PM
Am I the only one who takes great offense to "SPAR types"?  Why not change that to any other group of people (minority, ect) and see how it flies.

To presuppose an ENTIRE COMMUNITY is in on some boycott is ludicrous when every knows that the its hard to get two Springfielders to agree on what day it is. We are tight knit in many ways, but in other ways its hard to stop us from eating our own young. Think great big family on thanksgiving day.

My point is, aside from some small groups of friends, there has never been an organized, or otherwise accepted boycott of anything. Most people dont like the pawn shops because so many of us have later found our personal belongings in many of them (more than just the one) Its also hard to support businesses when, as Alex said, they run out of the very thing you expect them to have on a regular basis. If you are a sandwich shop, you should probably have bread. A-Z almost went out of business when Main St was torn up, but last I heard they arent going anywhere. Chans, every time I go in there I see a neighbor. Hell, even the few times I have gone into the Quality Foods (I dont go there because they seldom have everything I want/need, and I have never liked how the place smelled or felt) I have seen neighbors there shopping.

People in the neighborhood will give anything a try, and even give it a few times to get it right. However once you have burned us, I don't care how many times you repackage it, it just wont fly until its proven to work.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AlexS on April 30, 2008, 09:07:11 AM
Stephen, are you so impressed with your message that you are now quoting yourself ?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 30, 2008, 09:43:11 AM
LOL, that's at least the second or third time, that particular post has been quoted by Stephen.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jason_contentdg on May 01, 2008, 11:41:46 AM
pins and needles...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfield Girl on May 01, 2008, 01:50:27 PM
Stephen, your earlier post reflects the reality I see in Springfield. Like I've said before we are a diverse group and there is much more positive than negative. We have made a change in the residential area because we can, it is much easier and affordable. The problem on Main St. is not due to the residents but rather the property owners. Most of the properties are unavailable for purchase or rent and when they are they are often outrageously priced or uninhabitable. We do what we can but most of us have learned to focus on issues where we can actually effect change and not spin our wheels on things that are out of our control. I support the local businesses that have goods and services that I need or desire and so do my many friends and neighbors. That being said you cannot expect people to support something they do not need or want. I am friends with the local drycleaner but I do not buy clothes that need to be drycleaned so I do not need his services. Of the 10 businesses you cited earlier I support 6 on a regular basis even though some might consider me one of those bad "SPAR types". I do not in any way or form resemble a LOLA (little old lady of Springfield) though. SPAR is growing and changing with the neighborhood and if you came to a meeting or two you just might be surprised. Only 4 of the 14 board members are female and 9 of the 14 are in their 30's and 40's, hardly old by todays standard.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on May 02, 2008, 03:29:26 PM
River, I would be very interested in those properties if they were available and reasonable.   Main will have a commercial handicap due to the road construction for the next nine months.

8th and Walnut is available and can be had for a song.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on May 02, 2008, 03:36:41 PM
"Interestingly, it is this attempt to pull in the 'indie kids' Community of Interest that verifies my original point about the positive steps that Springfield can take.

I was one of the entrepruerial elements that helped that Community of Interest turn into a Community of Place in Five Points in the early 90s.  That community is the very one that followed our little flock of businesses into Springfield in the first place and it was established in the Five Points district using the exact same methods as described above.

Five Points, using the locals as a base, and drawing an outside crowd from the alternative Community of Interest (mostly the suburbs and Orange Park) established itself quite rapidly.

Only we did it with less people, not as well heeled, or even legitimately employed for that matter, in far less time.

The idea that Springfield is less able to do the same thing is kind of funny.

I think that the product Springfield has to offer that is available nowhere else in the city is the inclusionary programming that made the original businesses work in the first place."

Stephen, after reading this entire thread, and the post I've copied above in particular, it doesn't sound like you're supportive of "inclusionary" at all. Rather, it sounds like you support exclusionary, just in some direction other than what you perceive exists. Imho, a community of interest isn't comprised of just "indie kids", "SPAR types", "yuppies", "LOLAs", blacks, whites, yellows or any other label. Springfield is a community of interest to me because it has ALL of these and much more.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: RiversideGator on May 02, 2008, 05:19:09 PM
River, if you are interested in pursuing this, I would love to see the properties and sit down with a couple of other interested parties so that we can do it all at one time and thereby increase our chances.

I do like the building but actually I have my eye on another building.  I just have to finish a project I am working on and then get my financing straight.  I do think that building (8th and Walnut) has great potential though.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on May 05, 2008, 09:36:02 AM
Stephen, you are correct in that what is occurring in Springfield right now, desirable or undesirable, has been the direct result of social issues that reach far beyond the neighborhood's borders geographically, and far beyond the recent transitional period timewise.

The bottom lines are:

Few want Springfield to remain the way it was -- just about all want it to continue to change

The change that is occurring is not the result of some universally socially acceptable, or engineered, reversal of the social damage that has been wrought on the area (and several other Northside neighborhoods) over the past several decades

Few in the area are exclusionary in the way that you and she_clown have indicated in this thread, though many, including you and she_clown are exclusionary in other ways (this is where the labeling comes in -- too many "SPAR-types", continue to grow the "indie" element, "yuppies" at 3 Layers, etc.). I've already admitted that I'm exclusionary when it comes to values I don't want my kids to think are ok.

We're all on the same team. I may not agree with another Springfielder's approach, but I'm happy that another gives a hoot enough to keep making it better than it was (even if it's not my first choice re: HOW to make it better).

I think Springfield, with UF&Shands, FCCJ, Downtown and other surrounding assets so close is a very viable retail market. The real question is not "Is it viable?", but "Who in this 'burg is bright enough to see it?"

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 05, 2008, 10:53:44 AM
I believe the market for retail/dining/service businesses on Main Street is viable.  However, there are some things that need to be addressed that stunt Main's ultimate growth and limit the potential for complementing businesses to locate next to each other to create synergy.  A year or two ago, the major problem was building leasing rates and bloated land values.  However, the market is taking care of that problem.  Other issues that still need to be addressed still include, visual blight, existing building conditions, building landlord idealogy, marketing and promotion, etc.  With the road currently under construction, now is the time to tackle these issues, imo.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on May 05, 2008, 02:18:03 PM
There's no _ in sheclown. 

It's just that sometimes the rhetoric around here sounds like a bunch of missionaries imposing their cultural norms on an area without respect to what was existing already. 

Okay, blast me.  Tell me how terrible it was.  I know.  I was around ten years ago.  I sort of liked the parade of characters that are missing today.  I was never robbed, beaten, mistaken for a prostitute.  I was treated with kind respect from despicable characters.  I was entertained by long-winded sermons from drunken street preachers.  Hey, it was a funky place and that's why I moved in.  And, the house which I shared with the pigeons while I was restoring it?  no place like it.

So, the neighborhood has changed.  Values increased.  Saved?  I really don't know. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 05, 2008, 03:49:53 PM
Quote
Downtown wishes it had the residential base of springfield.

No doubt.  Springfield has three times as many residents as downtown does right now.  If the JEDC were smart, they would focus a little more attention of State & Union Streets.  A little work/marketing in that area would be a huge boost for both Downtown and Springfield, plus help finally tie them in back together.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jrtmom on May 05, 2008, 05:04:54 PM
SPR is still a funky place, if you ask me. 

No, not in the way it was 10+ years ago.  Not even in the way it was three years ago when we first found it! 

But we still have our share of characters, as many as or more than any other neighborhood, and you still have to "get it" to live here and become a part of the community.  Not everyone who lives in SPR really wants to be part of the community, but I think the majority do.

I got more stuff stolen from my N Central Phx house that was on a busy street next to a bus stop...but there I had a lot of walkable choices for groceries, dining, banks, etc.  And 2 blocks from the canal system, great for biking, running and dog walking. 

Jacksonville will get there eventually but it takes effort by more than just a few, as you all have said. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: zoo on May 05, 2008, 09:56:49 PM
Instead of using people (resident count) that are already there, JEDC would rather throw a massive of amount of city money at a brand new development project they hope will bring new office/retail and new residential base in Brooklyn. Re-creating the wheel closer to a "nicer" neighborhood...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 05, 2008, 10:24:36 PM
What's going on with that Brooklyn development?  It was supposed to break ground a year ago.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 06, 2008, 04:05:57 PM
Arlington and Springfield's retail situations are different in terms of history, physical environment and building density, especially the area around Regency Mall, which has seen more recent new commercial construction than most areas of Jacksonville. 

Regency is a "regional" mall that's set up to pull from multiple areas of the First Coast.  Its being out done by Jacksonville's three other regional centers Avenues Mall, St. Johns Town Center and even Orange Park Mall.  All have spent millions in the last two years either remodeling or on new construction.  Regency has stood pat and continues to lose the battle to attract regional customers.  The center is at a crossroad like many older malls eventually come to.  Its time to either go through a makeover to incorporate today's retailing trends or refuse and eventually go down the path of Gateway, Philips and Normandy Malls.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jrtmom on May 06, 2008, 04:36:48 PM
I think Arlington should pursue more business of the type that is already going to the area....the shopping just north of the mall generally has good activity, and it's easier to get to now that the flyover is done.

See this example from Chris-town Mall in central Phoenix....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christown_Spectrum_Mall

This one had a horrible Dillards outlet which I think was a big part of the decline.  That is gone now, and a few years back a Costco was brought in as one of the anchors....so now the big box stores are there which attracts a lot of people.  This mall isn't far from Camelback Rd which is car dealer heaven like Atlantic.  There is a good amount of perimeter shopping which continued throughout the decline and resurgence of the mall.  And it's in the midst of neighborhoods, mostly middle class.  It's also close by Baptist Hospital which kept some of the restaurants alive through the decline in the shopping space.

If Arlington can keep the perimeter population thriving while it quickly redevelops a strategy for the main mall, it has a better opportunity of survival and re-growth.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 06, 2008, 04:45:07 PM
Quote
But what advice would the springfielders give to their neighbors on how best to create a solution?

For Springfield:

Main Street is a viable retail market.  However there are obstacles that need to be addressed to give the corridor a swift kick in the pants.

1. Become a one-stop source of information

Make it easy for a perspective business owner to get information about Main Street.  Either SAMBA or SPAR needs to be a one stop resource of information and knowledge on available buildings, their square footage numbers, leasing rates, landlord info. and possible enterprise and empowerment zone grants.  Unlike the facade grant fiasco from a couple of years ago, these are programs that are easy to follow and the city can't give you much run around with, because the money comes from the state.  Speaking from personal experience with the 6th Street loft project, it was pretty easy working with the State for the Building Material Sales Tax Refund program the first unit.

2. Promotion and Marketing

Main Street isn't totally abandoned.  There are quite a few retailers out there.  Embrace them and pull them into the mix on how to attract more businesses to the district.  There's no reason we can't start promoting what's there already right now.

3. Atmosphere

People are attracted to Springfield because of it has an urban atmosphere that is unique to most of Jacksonville, including Riverside, Avondale and San Marco.  Any plan to revitalize Main should build upon that characteristic.  The physical landscape with older buildings lining the street and the street itself are unique things that give the district an urban feel.  The streetscape project will help change the physical look of blight, at least from a public property standpoint.

4. Foot Traffic

While, I've disagreed with Stephen many times in this thread, I do agree that foot traffic helps enhance the strips "sense of place".  We need to find away to work with existing businesses in a manner that helps build visual interest and foot traffic.  This can be done in multiple inexpensive ways through things like building illumination, signage, window displays and outdoor seating in front of existing dining establishments.

5. Recruitment of local businesses

While many want chains, most major chains have their own marketing departments and will come when the demographics fit their business model.  All the gimmicks in the world won't get them here if the demographic numbers aren't what they're looking for.  However, national chain retailers don't fit the model of what attracts urban pioneers to Springfield in the first place.  Its unique atmosphere and physical landscape.  With that said, Main is in a position to build upon that atmosphere by attracting locally based retail operations that don't rely on national demographics and that are more willing to adapt to shape and sizes of existing available buildings and the needs of the nearby urban population.  With that marketing information in hand, we need to agressively market that information to businesses that are attracted to being apart of what can become Jacksonville's premier urban retail district.  If we can pull the local retailers in, for those who desire national retailers, they'll soon follow on their own.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 06, 2008, 05:03:37 PM
thats a great description of the process lake.

The history of springfields main street and Downtown have an identical process.

When Regency Square opened, all of the stores multiplied by seven were in the shopping megaplex of downtown and springfield.

Main Street was busy all the way to trout river and people came from all over the state and southern georgia to shop here.  Certainly the shopping district of downtown was not supported by only its locals.   Every downtown of every city drew from a larger shopping base than its nearby residential stock.

Regency is going through the step by step process of what happened to our CBD, as anyone who was here when it happened can tell you.

Here's the difference between Regency, Downtown and Springfield.

Regency was built from the start to become a regional shopping mecca built for easy accomodation by the automobile.  Downtown and Springfield were built as urban districts that accomodated foot traffic from the dense nearby residential base and rail based traffic from the streetcar system.

Regency's construction had little to do with Arlington itself and more to do with being the premier shopping mall for Jacksonville as a whole.  Revitalization techniques for all will be somewhat different.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 06, 2008, 05:31:32 PM
Quote
Here's the difference between Regency, Downtown and Springfield.

Regency was built from the start to become a regional shopping mecca built for easy accomodation by the automobile.  Downtown and Springfield were built as urban districts that accomodated foot traffic from the dense nearby residential base and rail based traffic from the streetcar system.

Regency's construction had little to do with Arlington itself and more to do with being the premier shopping mall for Jacksonville as a whole.  Revitalization techniques for all will be somewhat different.

The dynamics are exactly the same Lake.  If you had been here you would know.

And I dont mean that to sound dismissive, but its not a conceptual thing with a couple of possible outcomes, it has already happened, which weve covered ourselves on this site.

I must admit, I wasn't around 100 years ago when Springfield and Downtown's retail districts came to life.  However, Jacksonville isn't unique.  This scene has been played out across the country on a continuous basis.

Quote
Regency Square would correlate with Downtown and the Hemming Plaza district (five million square feet of retail) and Main and 8th would correlate with Old Arlington's retail.

The residents obviously couldnt have done much to save downtown.

But who knows?  With proper code enforcement and a strong residents association in place to keep the neighborhood into deteriorating so badly, maybe there would have been enough force of will to influence how downtown developed.

Unfortunately, most of downtown's residential base was torn down as a result of failed urban renewal plans.  When the suburbanites fled to new retail centers that were free of downtown congestion, metered parking and one way streets, downtown retail, in general, had nothing to fall back on, considering the office population bolts from downtown like a bat out of hell at 5pm.

Quote
Instead most of the upper and middle class went and built on the cheap, tax reduced land in arlington, just as people have crossed over into st Johns and Clay County, providing the wealthy customer base that is leeching business away from the center.

But I do think that the people who are now having to struggle with reviving something probably have a whole laundry list of things that they wish their predecessors had or hadnt done to make things easier on this end.

For me, I would have limited the number of Car lots and maintained the brick streets for example.

I would have set a strict limit on the percentage of structures that could be endlessly subdivided into group homes.

Going back, for me I would have keep and expanded the streetcar system to deal with congestion and outlawed excessive building setbacks or demolitions for the sake of demolition.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on May 15, 2008, 07:38:12 AM
Sorry... been working A LOT. I did read JRTMom's post and agree with her. Also, from casual observation Arlington has been going down the tubes for awhile. I just don't think they have the upscale market to support anything too nice...it appears to have all moved to Southside. About the only reason for me to go to Arlington is they have a Home Depot AND a Lowes right across the street from each other LOL! Plus have you seen the buses at regency? Spend a day watching the buses and you will get an additional take on the downfall of regency at least.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on September 07, 2008, 09:48:19 PM
I still maintain my original position.  The businesses that appeal to Springfield residents, as well as through traffic on the neighborhood's major streets will be the ones most likely to survive.  Six months later, these businesses (ex. Three Layers, Jerome Brown's, Hola, the chicken restaurants, etc.) still appear to be doing well.

As far as the Main Street corridor goes, although the Cesery project is moving full steam ahead, I would not expect a retail renaissance anytime soon.  The street still has a full year of construction ahead.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ocklawaha on September 07, 2008, 10:50:38 PM
RECIPE FOR SPRINGFIELD RETAIL SUCCESS

Beat that MEDIAN OUT down Main and:

On a bed of ancient rock,

Just add properly aged streetcars,

A dash of greens,

garnish with gingerbread stops,

Pour in the people


OCKLAWAHA
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on September 08, 2008, 08:20:44 AM
Here's an update from UrbanJacksonville.Info on Uptown Market.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3229/2838270698_5fb491a5ef.jpg)
image courtesy of urban jacksonville.info

full article update: http://www.urbanjacksonville.info/2008/09/08/uptown-market-in-springfield/
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on September 08, 2008, 11:44:41 AM
Thats a great link, Lake.   But the image is not of the market.  Just a similar development.

Why do you say this?  The renderings seem to match the approved construction documents I saw a few months ago.

Quote
The actual opening remains to be seen, and if they follow the same kind of game plan that just closed 9th and Main for the final time (upper middle class whites preferred) then there isnt any likelihood of it working out.

This group isn't the same as 9th and Main.  If they can appeal to the same broad market that the Burrito Gallery appeals to, things should work out okay.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on September 08, 2008, 12:03:26 PM
I'm happy to see these guys move forward with something that will be a positive for the community.  Give them a chance.  Let's hope they've done their homework.  As long as the cereal, bread, milk and food aren't overpriced, they should be okay.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jason_contentdg on September 08, 2008, 12:51:11 PM
I see now.  Its just a rendering that hasnt been built yet.

It still needs to be said.

And while it is a different group, the Burrito Gallery is in a different neighborhood.

They need more customers than just that carryover crowd and Springfield yuppies.  Especially in this coming economy.


I understand your caution, but it seems you've become a little overtly negative about Springfield recently.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: City Slicker on September 13, 2008, 03:35:48 PM
These factors are all enough to seriously hinder any neighborhood by themselves.  But besides a lot of new residents and a general desire to see the neighborhood 'improve', the steps one actually has to take to make that happen have not and still are not, occurring.


Would you be willing to list the top 5 things that need to be done now to make things happen?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sparhater on September 19, 2008, 03:46:25 PM
Well.  they would be controversial steps.  Or at least it would be controversial to suggest them.

But it could be done even still.

Replace the SPAR board with new residents? The LOLAS must go. They whine about pawn shops and lodge complaints about Shanty Town (too noisy too many cars) and the Pearl (oh no they built a bar out back and didn't get a permit). They are not anti business, if it is a business a LOLA would frequent. Then again if you give them a bunch of money you can do anything you want, including renting to drug dealers and letting your properties and/or vacant lots sit and rot.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfield Girl on September 21, 2008, 05:00:09 PM
[quote author=sparhater link=topic=2028.msg42466#msg42466 date=1221853585

Replace the SPAR board with new residents? The LOLAS must go. They whine about pawn shops and lodge complaints about Shanty Town (too noisy too many cars) and the Pearl (oh no they built a bar out back and didn't get a permit). They are not anti business, if it is a business a LOLA would frequent. Then again if you give them a bunch of money you can do anything you want, including renting to drug dealers and letting your properties and/or vacant lots sit and rot.
[/quote]

You obviously know nothing about SPAR. The organization does not make complaints but forward those made by residents who call or email the office to the appropriate entity. I have seen many board members at The Pearl and Shantytown so you are so right, they obviously don't support those businesses? ::) ??? Could you please name the LOLA'S?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JaxByDefault on September 22, 2008, 12:24:01 AM
The organization does not make complaints but forward those made by residents who call or email the office to the appropriate entity.

This is not entirely true. There have been several requests in the CARE system that list/ed SPAR (or its administrative staff) as the follow-up contact or in which they were the complainant. There are several reasons CARE requests may get tied to SPAR (setting aside rumor and speculation, a major culprit). This may be because SPAR acts as a clearinghouse, as you suggest, or that the city records them as such because of who relays the information. However, it also could be because a couple members of the SPAR leadership personally file complaints but use SPAR's name to add more heft to the request.

The CARE system is easy to use and available to the public. As a matter of efficiency, SPAR should probably act as a middle person in the process only if a complainant is unaware of the program or in need of assistance.


Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: gatorback on September 22, 2008, 07:50:08 AM
If FCCJ became a 4 year degree school and built downtown to support that effort it would be great.  What is Spar doing to encourage FCCJ to build downtown?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JaxByDefault on September 22, 2008, 08:01:43 AM
I don't know SPAR's position on FCCJ. I would hope it would be something they would support as it would be fantastic for the neighborhood. 4-year schools tend to have greater student and faculty permanence as well as more robust relations with the cities in which they are located.

SPAR too often focuses on just the historic district. However, they do reach out to and work with Shands and (less often) FCCJ.

I encourage you to contact SPAR and put this issue on their radar, if it is not already.

Does anyone know if SPAR has a stance on FCCJ expansion and 4 year status?

*Edited for spelling.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fatcat on September 22, 2008, 11:52:29 AM
an attractive retail market is not Wal-mart or even Saks or any other national chain. When i use to live in Boston, friends visited me always wanted to go to small town like Salem, Springfield or some even Berkshire. The charm of not so big urban cities is the individualism. The main street needs more Papa-mama stores, local artists shops and local good cooking. 

Jacksonville will never become NYC, Jacksonville must look inside itself to find it is own charm. This is also true for springfield. Do not waste money to lobby national chains. Make the rent affordable and recruit small bz instead.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Downtown Dweller on September 22, 2008, 01:37:42 PM
Why not considered a positive? FCCJ should be considered as posititve if not more positive than Shands. Is this something still open or all over? It would be unfortunate if we as a neighborhood did not support this, FCCJ could be great for our neighborhood, as the neighborhood could be great for FCCJ!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on February 24, 2009, 01:48:15 PM
The west side of the streetscape project is looking great and here is a bit of good news.

New Restaurant for Springfield: Waffa and Mike’s Mediterranean

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3439/3307092780_aecee64179.jpg)
image courtesy of Urban Jacksonville.

full story: http://www.urbanjacksonville.info/2009/02/24/new-restaurant-for-springfield-waffa-and-mikes-mediterranean/
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsujax on February 24, 2009, 02:13:59 PM
Finally, some good news! I am so tired of the doom and gloom. Mike is a great mechanic as well. I wish him luck with his restaurant.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 19, 2009, 05:19:22 PM
Another spot getting ready to open up shop on Main.

(http://photos.metrojacksonville.com/photos/516037911_jooKj-M.jpg)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsu813 on April 19, 2009, 06:06:36 PM
where on Main?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 19, 2009, 06:25:57 PM
SE side of Main & 10th.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: billy on April 19, 2009, 06:36:40 PM
across 10th from the Krystal?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 19, 2009, 06:56:39 PM
Yes, its south the Krystal and north of KFC.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fatcat on April 20, 2009, 09:44:03 AM
yes. I wish I have done it! Meow!  But I will be the first in line to try it out. If you see an overly obese cat resting on the side walk, do not call the animal control, run towards the new Chinese take out instead.  ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Cliffs_Daughter on April 20, 2009, 10:06:32 AM
AS long as they take Visa and aren't a cash-only drive thru, I'm THERE.
FatCat, save me some Beef & Broccoli, 'k?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsu813 on April 20, 2009, 11:21:50 AM
i guess this would be considered "better than nothing"
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 20, 2009, 11:36:42 AM
At this point, I don't think its realistic to believe that Springfield will immediately fill up with multiple upper end dining destinations.  Especially, in a vacant drive thru building, such as this.  Nevertheless, the community will benefit and those options will become more realistic if vacant buildings fill up with new businesses.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Karl_Pilkington on April 20, 2009, 01:56:54 PM
come on, we've got bbq, mediterranian, mexican, sliders, fried chicken, chinese (fried rice with gravy on top yum), fish (captain D's), sandwiches and soul food what else do we need?  with all the other options downtown we're set!  Bucket of KFC extra crispy and a steamer pack from Krystals yeah thats what I'm talking about.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 20, 2009, 02:35:22 PM
I'm not complaining.  Springfield's dining scene may be more diverse than Downtown's....plus the parking is free.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Shwaz on April 20, 2009, 03:04:50 PM
Quote
come on, we've got bbq, mediterranian, mexican, sliders, fried chicken, chinese (fried rice with gravy on top yum), fish (captain D's), sandwiches and soul food what else do we need?  with all the other options downtown we're set!  Bucket of KFC extra crispy and a steamer pack from Krystals yeah thats what I'm talking about.

Don't forget "Hip-Hop Fish & Chicken"
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on April 21, 2009, 09:06:09 AM
Urban Jacksonville has an update on this Chinese restaurant that includes an image of the menu.

http://www.urbanjacksonville.info/2009/04/21/yangs-chinese-opening-soon-in-springfield/

menu: http://www.flickr.com/photos/urbanjacksonville/3461861857/sizes/l/
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Karl_Pilkington on April 21, 2009, 09:19:48 AM
after looking at that menu it looks almost identical to Chans.  the curry roast pork sounds interesting.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fatcat on April 23, 2009, 09:25:14 PM
I found saliva on my key board after clicked on the link to the menu ;)
Looks like a worthy competitor for Chan's. I like the fact they have different lunch special every day. I really need that motivation to get my fat cat ass over there  ;D ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thekillingwax on April 23, 2009, 11:25:37 PM
What the heck is a golden finger?

I'll try it. My favorite local place is Hop Shing. Chan's is good but I don't like their rice. First thing I'll try is the beef w/ black bean sauce, if it's as good as Ying's on 103rd, this place will own my heart.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: I-10east on April 24, 2009, 12:35:13 AM
About a week ago, I noticed Wafaa & Mike's Middle Eastern Food on Main Street has a sign that says "Shish Kabobs", so I'm like cool, I'm gonna get some shish kabobs; I go in there and they didn't have any, nor the equipment to make shish kabobs; The lady at the counter I believe(broken English) said that the eqipment wasn't gonna come in no time soon. So I settled for a pretty good steak, and chesse sandwich.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: urbanlibertarian on April 24, 2009, 08:21:33 PM
thekillingwax wrote "What the heck is a golden finger?"

For those who remember Laugh-In, I think the Fickle Finger of Fate award was a golden statuette.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: aaapolito on September 05, 2009, 08:38:56 PM
Okay. I know this may throw Pro-Springfield people into a frenzy, but I drove through the neighborhood today for the first time and I was not impressed.  (Qualifier: I am from a town just outside Newark, NJ and I used to work in Newark. I know urban neighborhoods and I am not naive when it comes to inner city surroundings.)  I can see why everyone talks about the potential of Springfield, but right now I can only see a neighborhood that needs a great renaissance to make it what people on this blog claim it to be.

Without more forward progress, I'm sorry, but it's just another urban neighborhood that that could have been.

I hope that it changes because I am inspired by a neighborhood that can turn itself around.  I really do like urban redevelopment, but I just did not see what I expected to see.


Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: aaapolito on September 05, 2009, 09:10:17 PM
I did like the historical bus stops and the victorian style homes.  Unfortunately, everything else overshadows.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Gonzo on September 05, 2009, 09:25:03 PM
You really should have seen it in 2005, when there was still promise.

So, Stephen, is one to assume from your quote above that you have written off Springfield? I thought you were a supporter... Or have I misunderstood something?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on September 06, 2009, 09:05:49 AM
Springfield Antiques is moving to Riverside.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: enuffalready on September 06, 2009, 01:17:29 PM
Springfield Antiques is moving to Riverside.

Is that true or are you just making a joke?

I heard the same thing. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on September 06, 2009, 01:20:02 PM
There was a sign in their window.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Gonzo on September 08, 2009, 08:10:27 AM
Stephen,

Thanks for your well thought out responses. I understand how you could feel the way you do. Had I had the experiences you had in the neighborhood I may feel similarly. I am sorry for the way you were treated and, while I never had the opportunity to visit, your concept for Boomtown always intrigued me.

Some of the issues stem with other residents and some with the city. I share your disapointment in the reception given to the new thrift shop on Main. Instead of deriding the owners, we should be lauding and supporting them for having the courage to open a store regardless of who it benefits. Had Goodwill or Salvation Army or SACARC opened a thrift store I doubt that the same response would have occured. I agree we need to curb the number of half-way houses in the area and that we have more than our share, but that certainly does not justify the type of response seen here.

As far as the other businesses locating in 5 Points, I recall a time when 5 Points was struggling, too. While it has always been a qaint area, it has had its share of reputation as well and yet it managed a renaissance. Once Main Street is finished and the economy turns around, I hope that Springfield will as well.

As a newer resident of the area -- but, not new to working in and interacting in the area -- I think there is still great potential. There are many unique buildings on Main and scattered throughout the neighborhood just waiting for development. I myself have been pining to open a small gastropub in the neighborhood, but cannot make it work financially at the moment. Main Street has the potential of becoming a funky, urban-oriented area akin to similar areas in other major cities such as San Francisco, Atlanta and St. Louis. It just takes vision, planning and cooperation.

Some ideas I have had:

The group of white buildings on the west side of Main at 5th would make an interesting restaurant/festival shopping/arts market.

The spainsh style building on the southeast corner of Pearl and 6th would make a wonderful gastropub.

The old grocery store at Walnut and 7th would be perfect for an upscale restaurant.

The retail building behind the Klutho Apartments would be perfect for a small Publix similar to the one in Riverside.

With the plans for the parks along Hogan's Creek being hashed out, rumor that the Parkview is coming down and that there is light at the end of the tunnel for Main Street, maybe, just maybe there is hope after all.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on September 08, 2009, 12:41:45 PM
Stephen and Gonzo, thanks for the support.  Now, both of you need to come in and buy something!  OK, just stop by sometime and say hi.

While we have really only been on Main for a short time, we have made a few discoveries.

We have discovered than the vast majority of our clients have come to us via bus or walking from their home in the neighborhood.   Many come into the store either when they are waiting for that next bus or when they are on their way home. 

Few of our customers actually come for the pawn shops.  Most who visit the pawn shops want to sell these days.  Some do indeed go to buy, but from what we have heard, it is tough out there for the pawn shops too.  This is a little different than what Bud (Springfield Emporium) used to say as he believe he got customers from the pawn shops and it hurt his business when he moved down a few blocks away from the pawn shops.

We have a few clients who drive to us.  We also have realized that parking will most likely be an issue on Main Street.  In our block, it already is sometimes.  Off-street parking will become a valuable asset in the future.  Remember that the parking available has to handle the renters on Main Street, the employees of the businesses and the customers we want to come in from other areas of Jacksonville.

There are more apartment rentals on Main than most would realize.  Many of theses residents are also our customers.

The economic and social groups coming into our store are about on par with the economic and social percentages of the community as represented in the Metro Edge study.  In other words, while we do service the lower income brackets that are the majority in Springfield, we also cross all economic and social lines.  We think this is very important as this is the type of business needed to help drive a revitalization effort on Main Street.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ethylene on September 09, 2009, 05:17:11 PM
"The times have changed of course and there is about to be another one of those massive changes in the neighborhood as a major player leaves the scene.   Depending on how that plays out I am waiting to make a decision."

Major player? Care to elaborate...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: samiam on February 06, 2010, 01:42:36 PM
Yes Springfield is a viable retail market
With all the new people buying houses to restore and a new developer coming in ( Planning commission blue sign posted on market between 4Th and 5Th. This is the apparent sight of his first Springfield house) This will bring more people into Springfield which in turn will strengthen the retail market. IMO the neighborhood is close to reaching critical mass for retail to take a second look at Springfield
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on February 06, 2010, 02:09:59 PM
I still think many suffer from the thought that Main Street belongs to a particular community and that all of our urban communities are isolated from each other.  Main Street is viable for businesses that look at the entire urban core and demographics as their target market.  Its not for those that believe a small, yet demographically diverse, population (under 5k) can support their business alone.

The same goes for downtown and how we view it.  We need to stop isolating our urban neighborhoods and act like a real city.  So, is Springfield alone a viable retail market for a street like Main?  No.  Is the Central City a viable retail market for a street like Main.  Yes, it is.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on February 06, 2010, 02:16:41 PM
I'm just tired of hearing about it and the neighborhood.  We need to focus on better integration of the urban core's districts and promoting them as a whole instead of isolating them.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsu813 on February 06, 2010, 02:25:41 PM
I'd love to have an urban core neighborhoods newspaper...even just monthly.

The Resident has 2 versions, 1 for San marco, San Jose and that area and 1 for Riverside, Avondale, Murray Hill & Ortega.

It would be great to have something like that just for the core neighborhoods......
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfielder on February 06, 2010, 03:57:08 PM
For the most part, most people don't read the newspapers anymore...they get their news online or tv...so having a neighborhood paper, to me, would be a waste of time. Besides, we have the Orange Blossom and of course, SPAR's weekly updates.... ::)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CS Foltz on February 06, 2010, 04:54:59 PM
Ahhhhhhh yes............the SPAR updates! ;D
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsu813 on February 06, 2010, 04:59:30 PM
The Resident is quite popular.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CS Foltz on February 06, 2010, 06:00:06 PM
Paper or blog should not matter if it is done in a professional manner..........good writing stands out on its own merits! Keep SPAR out of the commercial side of things and they will come!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on February 07, 2010, 09:29:39 AM
Yesterday someone came into the thrift store on her way to SHANDS and wanted to bring a patient some books and PJs.  We get quite a bit of traffic from SHANDS, nurses looking for scrubs, interns looking for lab coats.  Bottom line is that this is the sort of thing that keeps our doors open.  People who regularly shop with us and people who drop in from other parts of town (and other towns in the case of SHANDS). 

Lake is totally correct.  No neighborhood is an island. 

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on February 07, 2010, 09:24:37 PM
Right now, the much maligned tax places have increased the foot traffic on Main Street a 1000%.  And these people are buying vintage table cloths at the thrift store, checking out the DVDs at the pawn shops, and buying lunch at Carls. 

And, seriously, making me feel safer and less isolated on that stretch of Main.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Dan B on February 07, 2010, 09:49:51 PM
I thought personal attacks were against site policies?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Dan B on February 07, 2010, 10:06:44 PM
Oh, were you boycotting? I wasnt aware.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on May 10, 2010, 10:43:42 PM
We're alive and well, albeit a bit lonely in our little section of Main.  Although sometimes not as lonely as you'd think.

A nicely dressed man came into the thrift store today and while looking at a pair of dress pants, asked me "are you a mother?"  "well, yes" I replied.

He very abruptly grabbed me and hugged me and then kissed me.  And then said "Happy Mother's Day!" and left the store.

It felt.... opportunistic.  I had the feeling that he's been using this all over town.  No worse for the experience, although no better for it either, I feel compelled to warn the women of Springfield ...

beware of the Mother's Day kisser.





Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: mtraininjax on May 10, 2010, 11:01:36 PM
I remember a few years ago how the folks in Springfield were thumping their chests about Main street and all the redevelopment. Seems to me those same folks need to rejuvenate the pride again. It's not over, far from it.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 10, 2010, 11:15:31 PM
I think redevelopment is right around the corner.  Its just not going to come in the form of what many people envisioned this early in the process.  Despite the recession, you have a car wash on the way and proposals for a pedestrian friendly gas station/restaurant and the redevelopment of the blighted Park View nearby.  City Kidz is also in the process of expanding.  The community needs to support these developments and push for more.  Even though they may not be the Publix or Cracker Barrel some believed would come, additional development generates more traffic which makes the corridor more attractive to additional retailers.  Instead of fighting everything, get the ball rolling and you will see that momentum will be hard to stop.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on May 11, 2010, 07:37:28 AM
Part of the problem is the perceived crime or "unfavorables" who hang out on upper Main Street.  We do have vagrants, sometimes the mentally ill visit us, but Main Street is truly filled with very pleasant people walking by, or catching the bus, or visiting the pawn shops.  

I have fallen in love with the customers who visit Main Street.  The little old ladies who buy up all of the horror VHS tapes, the mentally challenged woman who pays for dolls with grubby quarters and pennies she has earned from collecting cans all over town, the performers who buy our beaded clothing, the families with little children who play in our display window, the rebels who come for the coffee.

These people fill my days.

I've been there for going on a year, and the worst thing to happen to me, is a stolen kiss.  :-*

Springfield is a viable market, but one must grow where he's planted, and welcome all people who walk on by.  Or as a wise friend tells me "greet all customers with eternal optimism."

& I would expand this to say "greet all businesses with eternal optimism."



Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: GoldenEst82 on May 11, 2010, 11:08:28 AM
What about something similar to what Downtown is doing with its empty space?
Letting artists/creatives rent the spaces cheap?

I know it was discussed in another thread that some building owners have subsidized rent for small retailers.
(ie Zombie, which has now moved)
Would not filling the spaces and having them cared for get them sold faster? I think a buyer would rather see a usable (and used) space, than a dilapidated pile.

Who even owns these derelict storefronts?
They seem to have been abandoned well before SP's re-birth.

It seems that Downtown has had a lot of trouble getting retailers in and staying because they want too much money to rent their space, and retailers don't want to pay out the bum to be in a Ghost town.

The over-valuing of assets seems to be a problem, and I'm willing to bet this attitude extends onto our Main St.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: GoldenEst82 on May 11, 2010, 12:48:10 PM
While I am very new to Springfield (8mos), I personally have drug everyone I know here, and talk up this area to everyone.
I see it as a more hip, urban and communal R'side. (or with the possibility to become so)

That said, I have a very difficult time reading some of the posts on this thread; claiming that the residents of this area have been (what I would consider) rude to Merchants, and ungrateful to them for the personal risk it takes to own your own business, especially in an area like ours.
I just have a hard time wrapping my brain around their logic. :-\

To return to the questions I asked, Why would something akin to that program not work here?
It would mean a slightly smaller risk to merchants (less out monthly), and a pedestrian walk down Main that would be ever so much improved!
I have introduced 4 families to this area since I moved here, (they call it visiting the city) and we have run out of places to walk to!  :P


Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: GoldenEst82 on May 11, 2010, 02:05:42 PM

I do not mean to seem thick at the moment, but I have to ask:
Why is a neighborhood organization-comprised of its own residents- at odds with the development of their retail front? What can be the purpose to that way of thinking?
 
Can it be possible that people within that group have no say in the platforms of the group?
Yes, but Idk if that IS the case.

I am going to say that I am a younger (under 30) person, and I moved here to be part of an artistic and diverse, family oriented community.
What I read on the Forums portrays a very different place.  :-[


 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: KuroiKetsunoHana on May 11, 2010, 02:23:36 PM
well, GE, that's partly because this is a forum.  on the internet.  where people come to argue.
i think most ov us are much more reasonable in person than here on the forums.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: GoldenEst82 on May 11, 2010, 02:56:25 PM
 :D And of the people, that has been true!
I have received nothing less than a warm reception, a few cringes at the word "renting", but warm none the less!

Joking aside, I want to be involved in my community, without involving myself in a decade old feud.

I know this (and others) forums are an outlet, but it does have implications in the real world too.
I have learned a lot about my neighbors, without meeting them, its kinda odd.  :)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on November 22, 2010, 04:33:05 PM
True, but in fairness Main St was torn up and rents for dilapidated buildings were out of line. I'd be interested to hear from those business owners why they chose those locations and if they had given Springfield any consideration at all and if so, again why they chose to go elsewhere.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on November 22, 2010, 04:36:47 PM
RIP Fusion. I miss Fusion as do many others based on recent conversations.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on November 22, 2010, 05:55:03 PM
Yes the SPAR chickens certainly came home to roost didn't they?

Well, at least some of them anyway, since SPAR had most of the ornamental Springfield chickens rounded up and killed. That being the case I should specify I was talking about SPAR's proverbial roosting chickens, and those there are plenty of... 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on November 22, 2010, 07:01:33 PM
I do however think the Main Street improvements are beautiful. I love the uplights for the trees on the median. Why aren't they all turned on though?

I called about leasing the corner of 7th/Main in the brick building and was told it was fully leased. Wonder what's coming in.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfielder on November 22, 2010, 07:06:16 PM
They aren't turned on because spar would be billed for them, at least, that's what I understand about them
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Miss Fixit on November 22, 2010, 07:07:24 PM
I do however think the Main Street improvements are beautiful. I love the uplights for the trees on the median. Why aren't they all turned on though?

I called about leasing the corner of 7th/Main in the brick building and was told it was fully leased. Wonder what's coming in.

SPAR has to pay the utility bill for the lights and doesn't have sufficient funding
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Coolyfett on November 22, 2010, 07:09:59 PM
How big are these lights?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on November 22, 2010, 07:11:46 PM
Not meaning to get off track to the thread, but why doesn't the city pay for the lights?  A community not for profit has to pay?  Really?  What is wrong with the city?  Ridiculous.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 22, 2010, 07:23:24 PM
We've lost too many bus stops on Main Street.

Business in the thrift store has dropped since JTA did away with the bus stop on the corner of 7th and Main.  Sometimes I think we go out of our way to keep the sidewalks nice and clear of people.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on November 22, 2010, 07:33:42 PM
The way Main Street was created with the median and not all the through streets was meant to be walkable. But walk to what?  No offense to the thrift store or other businesses, albeit few, there. With the exception of the Boom Town Building and the Woolworth's, and maybe the New Orleans style old A-Z Sandwiches building, Main Street is in good shape, BUT NO STORES, EATERIES, ETC.!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 22, 2010, 07:49:16 PM
We used to get folks walking from the bus stop on 8th Street to the bus stop in 7th Street and stopping in to kill some time at the thrift store.  Sure, these weren't the folks who would frequent an "eatery" but they did buy $4.00 pairs of jeans. French fries at Carls or a DVD at the pawn shops.  Now these folks are gone too.

And I sat in a SHADCO meeting where eliminating bus stops was all the talk.  Spoken from people who do not have a clue about retail realities and their Main Street.

If a thrift store or a pawn shop or a Carl's can't make it b/c all customers are eliminated, who is going to want to take a risk on the "forgotten block" of Main Street? 

I really don't know.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 22, 2010, 07:54:00 PM
Hell, people wouldn't even walk down our block for the Main Street celebration.  They drove by and waved...(at the time it seemed like the middle finger).
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 22, 2010, 08:15:26 PM
Don't even get me started about parking.

On a good Tuesday morning, the ladies of the Bible class take up the entire west side of Main Street from 7th to 8th. Not a problem since there is only one business open on the east side of this block so there is always plenty of parking.

What would happen if a coffee shop opened up as successful as 3 layers?  Have you seen what parking is like on the corner of 6th and Walnut on a busy night?  Put a couple of successful businesses there and you'd have to walk, for quite a distance,  since there is no place to park. 

A potential business man or woman will notice available parking...

Angled parking would have helped, it would have doubled the parking places.  
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on November 22, 2010, 08:32:27 PM
It cost quite a bit to light up the streets every night.  SPAR Council (and perhaps HSCC before them) made a deal to have those pretty lights added, but had to agree to pay for them.  The same with the fancy plantings that needed watered, they had to agree to pay for the cost of the water.  The city agreed to pay for the lights and their installation, the plants and the sprinkler system. I suspect deals like this between the city and communities are pretty common.  

I think someone had promised to pay for the lights and water for a time period and everyone thought someone else would step up, but then came the long delay in getting the last 2/3rds of Main done and the economy and here we are. Last time the lights were on, they only did the first few blocks, this time it is all of Main at least.

In theory, the businesses along Main would be happy to contribute to have the pretty lights and keep the plantings well kept, but under the circumstances, no one has nor probably will. If it was a vibrant area with real possibilities instead of the past's flawed promises, the businesses would have asked to do it.

I have to ask, what exactly has SPAR Council accomplished with the LISC funds for Main Street?  I have yet to see real tangible results for the betterment of the community.

SHeclown is very right about the bus stops. Those cries that Springfield had too many bus stops and needed to have far fewer came from those who never ride the buses.  It has hurt the few business on our block of Main Street.  It reduced the odds of something like a hot dog shop being able to make it on that block.  It also illustrates very well why things like rubber wheels buses and trolleys can not and will not bring the needed development to an area. The whole concept can be taken away on the whim of the JTA or the local organizations. No business could depend on a customer base with just a trolley stop near by.  It makes a big argument for Streetcar with fixed, expensive stops that will not be moved anytime soon.

While Main Street was being worked on, some started the cry for bike lanes.  Then we would have had zero on-street parking.  About that time, a few on this forum said parking would not be a problem but frankly, it is about 10% of the time.  Like Sheclown said, if there were just a couple of real, active businesses on every block, it would be a problem 90% of the time.  SPAR Council and SAMBA had a meeting about this issue and some good info came out of it, but the conversation died quickly.

We have a lot of good intentions and talk going on now about the commercial corridor. I do wonder if we are really past the old way of thinking though.  Can we move past the "not welcomed" if the business does not meet some out of this world ideal some have and recognize that every single business there has value and is needed?  I don't know.

The rents were never "out of line" - at least not per the realtors who were telling the owners what to charge.  Yes, some owners were greedy, but you can also place the blame on some realtors and the local organization telling everyone that only certain business were welcomed. And that the overlay said things it did not. All to control the who and the what.  That didn't work out that well for all of us, now did it?

Main Street needs help.  And it will get it.  We are finally moving out of the darkness and into the help not hinder stage and so look for a few to do some pretty great things here in the next year or so.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on November 22, 2010, 08:46:46 PM
FYI, south of 6th on Main was not lit tonight.  But 7th-8th was beautiful with trees and lights.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 22, 2010, 08:51:10 PM
:) It is a beautiful sight.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: movedsouth on November 22, 2010, 11:50:34 PM
About the median lights: This was discussed at the last round table meeting. Indeed, SPAR foots the bill for the median lights. I think the cost they quoted was around $300 a month, but it depends on the hours (this is for dusk to 11pm if I recall right). Given that SPAR pays for it, SPAR also controls when they are turned on. A donation to SPAR may keep the lights going longer. Right now, SPAR only pays for it during events. During the round table meeting, they talked about JEA turning them on by mistake in the past in response to residents calling JEA about the "outage".

Guess we can be happy that the City is paying for some lights around here :(

Main Street is in a very sad state right now, and it is not any particular entities fault. Greedy developers sitting on properties, a city that lost its downtown focus, missing residential density around it. In many ways, what we call "downtown" is no longer functioning as a downtown. Areas around JTB are much more downtown like (jobs + shopping + residential density) then what is geographically called downtown.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 23, 2010, 06:42:52 AM
It is a perfect storm of tragedy, but certainly misguided attempts at gentrifying Main Street at the expense of the reality of the current retail situation hastened its death.

~encouraging JTA to get rid of bus stops on Main Street & 8th Street
~silly boycotts of 'uncooperative' businesses
~using commercial corridor dollars for expensive studies and consultants instead of real & lasting improvements to the existing building fabric
~all out war on places like the car wash (you think that brought a rush of potential businesses in?)

Make no mistake about it.  Main Street, business-wise, is worse this year than last.  

Even tax places are relocating to a more vibrant location.



Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CS Foltz on November 23, 2010, 06:53:58 AM
Well Main Street upgrade did not do a whole lot for anything sheclown! That was not its  purpose,( stupid though it seems!) it was to make it look better! It is cleaner, but that is about it......once again the City had no vision, no plan and no means to fund it! There has never been anything that I am aware off to fully address these issue's in Springfield? So much for the representative doing their job, but I degress............this may be something that your next representative can get involved in and SOS might get some input! I know that the business's need to band together or there will be no business's!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on November 23, 2010, 08:15:13 AM
No.  When I was a SAMBA board member, I wanted to have JTA shift their entire BRT corridor to Main Street (although not many liked that idea).  The more frequent reliable bus service on your commercial corridors, the better, in my opinion.  As Strider said, they won't spur permanent development in the form of major construction but riders can support existing businesses and create opportunities for complementing enterprises (ex. hot dog stands, etc.) to open near major stops.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on November 23, 2010, 08:26:41 AM
I know it was brought up at a SHADCO meeting by Sgt Short. Less bus stops = less excuses for people hanging around claiming to be waiting for a bus.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on November 23, 2010, 08:39:38 AM
basically, this sounds like a solution that throws the baby out with the bath water.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on November 23, 2010, 08:41:26 AM
Well looks like SPAR screwed everyone yet again with their asinine quest to get rid of 'undesirables'...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsujax on November 23, 2010, 08:44:48 AM
From what I have heard there may be some local residents stepping up to cover the cost of the lights in the median being lit all the time. There are two grids. 1st-6th and 6th-12th. The cost as it has been estimated is approximately $150 a month per grid. This keeps the lights on till midnight.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsujax on November 23, 2010, 08:57:51 AM
BRT down Main St...it isnt too late!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsujax on November 23, 2010, 09:22:19 AM
OK...streetcars it is! What did JEDC say about it?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: movedsouth on November 23, 2010, 10:01:06 AM
based on my roundtable notes: Streetcars or any expansion like that will have to wait until the courthouse is finished. I guess to include the court house traffic in the new routes.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ethylene on November 23, 2010, 10:03:20 AM
Not meaning to get off track to the thread, but why doesn't the city pay for the lights?  A community not for profit has to pay?  Really?  What is wrong with the city?  Ridiculous.

Jacksonhelle!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on November 23, 2010, 10:09:30 AM
based on my roundtable notes: Streetcars or any expansion like that will have to wait until the courthouse is finished. I guess to include the court house traffic in the new routes.

This is where better coordination between public agencies is needed.  Streetcars and mobility have little to do with the construction of the county courthouse.  The conceptual routes have already been proposed and various funding sources are already being lined up to come into play (same goes for BRT and the skyway, which already exists).  Regardless of if the courthouse opens in 2012 or 2035, our agencies should be working together to make sure we're taking full advantage of all mobility based projects to ensure that true pedestrian scale connectivity occurs with all projects (private and public sector). 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on November 23, 2010, 11:19:24 AM
As I recall, it seems the bus stop conversation was regarding 8th St not Main. Who at JTA can provide the reason Main St stops were removed?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on November 23, 2010, 07:34:57 PM
I've never heard of any discussions about moving the bus stops at a SPAR meeting.  However, the only SPAR meetings I attended were about rooming houses :)  I did attend a SHADCO meeting where the crowd thought moving the bus stops was a good idea.  JSO promoted it, actually. 

We've had threads on here about reducing the number of bus stops as a way to eliminate "loitering".


Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: nvrenuf on November 23, 2010, 08:43:11 PM
I've never heard of any discussions about moving the bus stops at a SPAR meeting.  However, the only SPAR meetings I attended were about rooming houses :)  I did attend a SHADCO meeting where the crowd thought moving the bus stops was a good idea.  JSO promoted it, actually. 

We've had threads on here about reducing the number of bus stops as a way to eliminate "loitering".



Yep, that's the meeting I remember too at SHADCO.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Coolyfett on November 23, 2010, 10:10:21 PM
Yes
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CityLife on November 24, 2010, 01:53:31 PM
What was the cost of SPAR's anti business, lynch mob mentality on this district.

Well its hard to measure the costs of missed opportunities, but 'districts' tend to happen one at a time, and at the same time that SPAR was declaring war on everyone, King Street had a similar inventory of dilapidated buildings and unused spaces.

Three years later:
(http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs354.snc3/29293_128565317165479_127900047232006_223131_4585466_n.jpg)

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2010-nov-intuition-ale-works-grand-opening-november-20-2010

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2010-jun-new-projects-venues-make-a-king-street-district

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2008-may-bold-city-brewery-coming-to-riverside



Here is a quote from Ben Davis to me:

"I'm pretty much set with the location in Riverside. It is a mile from my home which is key after a long brew day!

Springfield is a very cool area. Uptown market is our regular Sunday breakfast spot. I agree there are some awesome warehouses but I really wanted to be close to home when push came to shove."

I've had similar responses from other food/drink/entertainment operators about Springfield.

I'm also willing to bet that King Street and the Riverside warehouse district didn't have as high a level of real estate speculation as Springfield did.

I'm working with friends of mine to open a live music/entertainment venue in Springfield, but it isn't quite as easy as one would think...

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CityLife on November 24, 2010, 02:08:03 PM
What was the cost of SPAR's anti business, lynch mob mentality on this district.

Well its hard to measure the costs of missed opportunities, but 'districts' tend to happen one at a time, and at the same time that SPAR was declaring war on everyone, King Street had a similar inventory of dilapidated buildings and unused spaces.

Three years later:
(http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs354.snc3/29293_128565317165479_127900047232006_223131_4585466_n.jpg)

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2010-nov-intuition-ale-works-grand-opening-november-20-2010

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2010-jun-new-projects-venues-make-a-king-street-district

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2008-may-bold-city-brewery-coming-to-riverside



Here is a quote from Ben Davis to me:

"I'm pretty much set with the location in Riverside. It is a mile from my home which is key after a long brew day!

Springfield is a very cool area. Uptown market is our regular Sunday breakfast spot. I agree there are some awesome warehouses but I really wanted to be close to home when push came to shove."

I've had similar responses from other food/drink/entertainment operators about Springfield.

I'm also willing to bet that King Street and the Riverside warehouse district didn't have as high a level of real estate speculation as Springfield did.

I'm working with friends of mine to open a live music/entertainment venue in Springfield, but it isn't quite as easy as one would think...



yeah, no kidding its not as easy.  Hopefully you will review some of your past statements re boomtown and the other establishments that actually did it.

The real estate speculation was driven largely by the group of people who controlled SPAR.  Of course they all disappeared the minute the market went down.

Past statements regarding Boomtown?

There aren't any venues in Springfield that draw national level acts, so not sure there is really a precedent for what my friends and I are trying to do.

The real estate speculation on Main Street was not driven by people who control SPAR...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CityLife on November 24, 2010, 02:20:29 PM
Well actually we did pull in national acts, City Life.  There is definitely precedent, lol,

But it is a difficult business to get into, and it takes a lot of hard work, and its a cash eating machine.

The people who drove the speculation do not presently control SPAR, obviously.

None of them are left. after subverting the organization they bailed when the easy money dried up.

Definitely wish you good luck, consider me a resource if I can offer any practical advice.

I was in college during Boomtown's run, so wouldn't know. My bad. Who were some of the more notable acts?

It is definitely a difficult business, but fortunately the guys have some experience and some friends in the music industry.

Thanks for the offer and I'll take that up if things start to come to fruition.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CityLife on November 24, 2010, 02:49:18 PM
good.  I hope you do, the offer is sincere, once you cross over into the real world of business you have my sympathy! ;) (and pretty much every other businessperson out there---almost like a support group)

Not to brag...but I've been in the real world of business...

In this day and age it takes a rare breed to open a small business, so I imagine there is a pretty tight bond between business owners. Kind of like a support group for the mentally ill.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CityLife on November 24, 2010, 03:15:22 PM
good.  I hope you do, the offer is sincere, once you cross over into the real world of business you have my sympathy! ;) (and pretty much every other businessperson out there---almost like a support group)

Not to brag...but I've been in the real world of business...

In this day and age it takes a rare breed to open a small business, so I imagine there is a pretty tight bond between business owners. Kind of like a support group for the mentally ill.



It rapidly becomes that.  If you don't mind sharing, what kind of business have you been in?  I wasnt referring to a lack of past experience, incidentally, just the state of going into your own business, no matter how many priors you have already racked up on your record. ;)

I prefer to be a man of mystery...

But seriously, I worked for Fidelity Investments as a stock trader for a year or so after college, was doing well there, but hated working a soulless job and quit to go grad school in urban planning.

I've always been a bit of an entrepreneur of sorts and ran a pretty successful EBAY business when I was in college...Of course that doesn't compare to running a music venue, but I won't be doing that. I'll just be helping my friends here and there.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: CS Foltz on November 24, 2010, 06:26:02 PM
Springfield has potential, no doubt in my mind, but the idiots at JTA see fit to just change bus routes when they wish? This makes me wonder just how they decide to play musical routes? Its bad enough there is no where near the covered bus stops required for 1800 some odd stops, but these clowns dictate just where bus's will stop on a whim? It would seem to me, the public should have a say in where any stops should be installed or discontinued................for this we get the state to pay their way? I get tired of all of these so-called independent agencies deciding for me where what and when..........but I get to pay for it! BOOZO'S plain and simple!............transportation planning group huh..........yea right!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on December 15, 2010, 11:44:20 PM
Southern California is about as diverse and eclectic as you can get. 

Springfield exudes potential.  The boat has been missed to many times or too many people have been thrown overboard without a life jacket. 

Take Old Town Orange:
http://www.otpa.org/home.html (http://www.otpa.org/home.html)
http://www.cityoforange.org/about/points_of_interest.asp#shopping (http://www.cityoforange.org/about/points_of_interest.asp#shopping)

"Residents and visitors have repeatedly voted historic Old Towne as Orange County’s favorite downtown. The plaza conjures up images of Main Street, USA complete with outdoor dining, specialty shops, and the central plaza park. More than 60 antique dealers line the downtown streets, making Orange the antique capital of Southern California. "

Or take Old Town Pasadena:
http://www.oldpasadena.org/index.asp (http://www.oldpasadena.org/index.asp)

They have a mix of high end stores and mom/pop stores, plus a zillion other cool places.

Or the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego:
http://www.gaslamp.org/ (http://www.gaslamp.org/)

Horton Plaza and the Petco Stadium are close/contained within.

I'll bet that most all reading this have heard of one of these 3 places, maybe even visited.  A great big DUH, but without a vibrant commercial corridor (Main/8th) Springfield will remain nameless.  So much potential, it is really a shame.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on December 29, 2010, 08:38:19 PM
Those boycotts worked out well, huh? Main street is almost completely vacant.

Funny thing is, once you get past the MLK expressway (e.g., beyond SPAR's reach) the businesses pick back up.

Wonder why that is?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: letters and numbers on December 30, 2010, 12:54:32 PM
Those boycotts worked out well, huh? Main street is almost completely vacant.

Funny thing is, once you get past the MLK expressway (e.g., beyond SPAR's reach) the businesses pick back up.

Wonder why that is?

Hey im probably going to buy a house in springfield this year and friends are going to soon. I know there aresome awesome businesses in the nieghborhood but not on Main street.

Why is that?

I read back posts and it reads like a Hionedes person and Spar have had problems with things. Is this this still happening? i met people in spar and they semmed like they are trying to do different things for main street all sorts of stuff. Bbut i dont know anything about the hionedes person. Maybe ill open a business there!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on December 30, 2010, 03:10:46 PM
Those boycotts worked out well, huh? Main street is almost completely vacant.

Funny thing is, once you get past the MLK expressway (e.g., beyond SPAR's reach) the businesses pick back up.

Wonder why that is?

Hey im probably going to buy a house in springfield this year and friends are going to soon. I know there aresome awesome businesses in the nieghborhood but not on Main street.

Why is that?

I read back posts and it reads like a Hionedes person and Spar have had problems with things. Is this this still happening? i met people in spar and they semmed like they are trying to do different things for main street all sorts of stuff. Bbut i dont know anything about the hionedes person. Maybe ill open a business there!

Hionedes cleaned up his act. He was a land-banker who would buy things and sit on them, and for years that worked out alright. Then the economy soured and values began declining and he had to hire a new property manager who actually doesn't feel it's beneath her to lease a place out. Which was a major improvement over the old one. Hionedes was never the problem that SPAR was.

Regarding SPAR, they say they're doing X, Y, and Z but so far the only thing that has come to (some rather ironic) fruition is the project by Robert VanWinkle to renovate the former Park View Inn site. SPAR pulled out every dirty trick in the book on this guy, trying to have the site demolished. I guess they wanted it to match all the vacant lots they created in Springfield. But he had more money than they did. Also their attempts to have the property declared an EPA hazard backfired when their repeated complaints succeeded in getting most of the neighborhood tagged, not just that site. Now he's the only development happening on Main Street. Expect them to try and take credit for it when it's finished. Seriously comical.

I keep hearing about this new leaf SPAR is turning over, but they somewhat recently filed a zoning appeal trying to stop a car-wash from opening, even though it had been a car wash since the 1950s and that certainly didn't stop them from moving in. Lol. I guess what I'm saying with SPAR is, believe it only when (really more like "if") you see it.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jason_contentdg on December 30, 2010, 03:38:53 PM
Those boycotts worked out well, huh? Main street is almost completely vacant.

Funny thing is, once you get past the MLK expressway (e.g., beyond SPAR's reach) the businesses pick back up.

Wonder why that is?

Hey im probably going to buy a house in springfield this year and friends are going to soon. I know there aresome awesome businesses in the nieghborhood but not on Main street.

Why is that?

I read back posts and it reads like a Hionedes person and Spar have had problems with things. Is this this still happening? i met people in spar and they semmed like they are trying to do different things for main street all sorts of stuff. Bbut i dont know anything about the hionedes person. Maybe ill open a business there!

Hionedes cleaned up his act. He was a land-banker who would buy things and sit on them, and for years that worked out alright. Then the economy soured and values began declining and he had to hire a new property manager who actually doesn't feel it's beneath her to lease a place out. Which was a major improvement over the old one. Hionedes was never the problem that SPAR was.


People are still having issues trying to contact Petra about Springfield properties, though...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jason_contentdg on December 30, 2010, 04:19:29 PM
They cant be trying too hard then.  They are remarkably easy to contact.



They gave up after multiple phone calls and emails.


I've left a couple messages myself.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on December 30, 2010, 04:52:15 PM
I've had experiences of being ignored by phone and email. So I just show up at the front door.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Ocklawaha on December 30, 2010, 10:15:49 PM
I think it is, absolutely a viable retail market. The problems are myriad and should be addressed by the neighborhood groups and COJ as well as JTA.  Y'all know I wouldn't hesitate to visit a store in Springfield, Durkeeville or Moncrief, but many, perhaps hundreds of my neighbors won't. For those that miss the Indie-artsy-eclectic experiences the loss is theirs but it also hurts business, it's the same old safety perception argument that many toss at downtown, UNSAFE. A bit of reason from the screen play "Trading Places." and it could have been spoken by half the residents of WGV, Nocatee, Palencia, Ponte Vedra, Bay Meadows etc...

   
Quote
It was a dream.
I dreamt the whole thing.
It was just a bad dream.

Coleman, I've had
the most absurd nightmare.

I was poor and no one liked me
I lost my job, I lost my house.
Penelope hated me.

And it was all because
of this terrible, awful Negro.

 - Oh dear!
- lt...was...the...Dukes.

So will having a "terrible awful Negro," as a customer kill Springfield Business? Not a chance, but having the perception of homelessness, crime, and filth will kill it every time. Springfield is at a handicap not shared by San Marco, Riverside or Avondale, it is between the missions downtown and the State Charity Hospital and VA and Health Department Clinics.  You also have some issues with the East Side some of which has gone to hell in a hand basket, including a large homeless camp along the abandoned railroad that forms the eastern boundary of Springfield, and down on Union Street. So at all hours anyone needing anything like medical care, check ups, or just hanging with friends that are getting those services are trotting across Springfield.

Just based on this, Springfield is going to need a gimmick to get over the slump not shared by its sister neighborhoods, and that AFTER a general continuing clean-up.

So here's the idea, return "THE MOST BEAUTIFUL STREETCAR LINE IN THE WORLD," to Main Street, between Orange and 8Th and on 8Th to the Shand's/VA complex. Streetcar combined with the period buildings in ANY of our historic neighborhoods would create instant investment opportunities that come with their own built in traffic source.

The second streetcar line would run north from the old Union Street Warehouses straight north to 21St street on the old railroad right-of-way. What is today a mis-mash of ugly littered woods and abandoned warehouses could be turned into a broad green scape that runs the length of the community. Beyond 21St the old railroad curves over to Gateway Mall. In one swoop, with 2 car lines, you have provided a real transportation option for those foot commuters, and you have connected the stadiums with Gateway Mall, Shand's, and downtown, creating a dynamic development engine.

I think it will fly Wilbur, let's dust off some idea's for that long abandoned railroad strip.


OCKLAWAHA

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on December 27, 2011, 11:19:28 AM
I think 3 of the 8 shown in those pics are closed, unless something closed recently that I'm not aware of.  Another (Adel's) relocated to the former Payless shoe store building at 11th & Main, which happened to be vacant at the time those pics were taken.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on December 27, 2011, 11:21:24 AM
Btw, I still believe that if more focus was given to existing businesses and using them as anchors to build upon, a few of the closed shown in the images above may have still been in business today.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Debbie Thompson on August 01, 2013, 01:37:27 PM
Half of them anyway.  It's a shame.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 21, 2013, 09:03:01 PM
Half of them anyway.  It's a shame.

Turnover over five years is typical.  Pics from Five Points in 2008 will also reveal several businesses that don't exist anymore.  However, for the most part, they were replaced and additional infill has taken place.  I think the question that needs to be asked is what's stopped additional growth along Main Street and what can be done to resolve that particular issue (or set of issues).  The same question needs to be asked for DT as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: FSBA on August 21, 2013, 09:25:21 PM
There was a comment in this thread about how well Main St was doing north of MLK to the Trout River. What are you talking about? Using the same 5 year standard the following businesses have closed

Food Lion
Jackie's Seafood (later reopened as Fella's and closed again)
ABC Liqour
McDonalds
Jax Bargain Plywood
Another hardware store closed on 48th and Main, I forget what its name was


The only businesses of any substance that have opened are
Save-A-Lot reopened in the old Food Lion. However, they're only using roughly half the foot print. I have trouble seeing what else might go there.

Hip Hop Chicken
Alexander's Grill (If there is a Part 3 to the Hole in a Wall series, these guys deserve a shout out. Good wings and very generous with portions)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 21, 2013, 09:32:16 PM
Where's Alexander's Grill?  Never heard of them.  Also, has anyone tried out Hip Hop Chicken?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: DDC on August 21, 2013, 09:57:08 PM
Where's Alexander's Grill?  Never heard of them.  Also, has anyone tried out Hip Hop Chicken?

I have eaten at Hip Hop Fish and Chicken several times but not in the past 3 -4 years. I was never disatisfired with the food. Always good portions, tasty, nothing fancy but good food. I was working in the area at night and it was one of my rotation of eateries.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on August 22, 2013, 08:15:23 AM
There was a comment in this thread about how well Main St was doing north of MLK to the Trout River. What are you talking about? Using the same 5 year standard the following businesses have closed

Food Lion
Jackie's Seafood (later reopened as Fella's and closed again)
ABC Liqour
McDonalds
Jax Bargain Plywood
Another hardware store closed on 48th and Main, I forget what its name was


The only businesses of any substance that have opened are
Save-A-Lot reopened in the old Food Lion. However, they're only using roughly half the foot print. I have trouble seeing what else might go there.

Hip Hop Chicken
Alexander's Grill (If there is a Part 3 to the Hole in a Wall series, these guys deserve a shout out. Good wings and very generous with portions)



As mentioned, Save a lot opened in half of the old food lion.

Jackies is undergoing a long and major renovation to be opened as something?

ABC is still empty as is Mc Donalds

JAx Bargain Plywood is a new business now.

The old hardware store was Monks Hardware and it is still an empty building.

Traditionally, the northern part of Main has been doing better than the Historic Springfield area.  Stephen is at least partially right in that for a period of time, there was a group of people in Springfield who tried to determine who, what and where when the market had other ideas.  It no longer matters who they were or what their actual game plan was, it didn't work and hurt the commercial corridor.  I think that what we see on Main today is simply the natural state of affairs. It is not a particularity successful commercial corridor no matter what section you look at.  It is an average older area and it shows in the types of businesses and the lack of new construction.  Though the latter may not be a bad thing as it doesn't look like all of the rest of America that way.

It would be a bit interesting to do a study about how each of the road design philosophies effect the commercial aspects as there are at least four different designs used from First Street to the Trout River.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: FSBA on August 22, 2013, 08:28:14 AM
Where's Alexander's Grill?  Never heard of them.  Also, has anyone tried out Hip Hop Chicken?

7071 N Main St, Jacksonville FL 32208

Next to a gas station, across the street from the trailer park
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on August 22, 2013, 08:40:55 AM
The stupid medians on Main Street and the removal of bus stops will continue to inhibit commercial viability until reversed. Both SPAR initiatives naturally. Removing the bus stops eliminated a lot of blue collar but employed foot traffic, and the medians make it a hassle to get to a particular storefront, not to mention they've had the effect of creating something of an expressway with much faster traffic than before. In every city I've seen install those medians it's basically the same result, it inhibits commercial development. And tufsu spare me the "it's a state/federal road, they were mandated" argument, almost all of the rest of main both north and south of Springfield doesn't have them, it was one more SPAR decision the rest of us get to live with.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: chris farley on August 22, 2013, 09:26:33 AM
Quote
The stupid medians on Main Street and the removal of bus stops will continue to inhibit commercial viability until reversed. Both SPAR initiatives naturally. Removing the bus stops eliminated a lot of blue collar but employed foot traffic, and the medians make it a hassle to get to a particular storefront, not to mention they've had the effect of creating something of an expressway with much faster traffic than before. In every city I've seen install those medians it's basically the same result, it inhibits commercial development. And tufsu spare me the "it's a state/federal road, they were mandated" argument, almost all of the rest of main both north and south of Springfield doesn't have them, it was one more SPAR decision the rest of us get to live with.
Unquote
Above completely untrue, except I do not know about the "inhibition".  Some of the first things I saw when I came into Springfield in 2000 were the beautiful Main Street Plans on the walls of the Historic Springfield Community Council (HSCC).  Glorious drawings. HSCC had offices in the Woman's Club Building.  Phil Neary was president and he fought for Main Street restoration.  The medians were put back as restoration of the original ones, sadly we could not get trolley tracks on them  The rest of Main Street does not fall under historic guidelines, as does our section.  The idea was to try to recreate.  One of the engineers who supervised the Main Street redo, said he regretted not making the historic part of Main single lane with nose in parking in the other lane.  Bus stops are not a local entity decision.  SPAR was not really involved in Main Street until after the merger of HSCC and SPAR.    As to the decision on the plantings that was done at community meetings held by GAI, I just wish we had gone for palm trees.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: peestandingup on August 22, 2013, 10:02:35 AM
The stupid medians on Main Street and the removal of bus stops will continue to inhibit commercial viability until reversed. Both SPAR initiatives naturally. Removing the bus stops eliminated a lot of blue collar but employed foot traffic, and the medians make it a hassle to get to a particular storefront, not to mention they've had the effect of creating something of an expressway with much faster traffic than before. In every city I've seen install those medians it's basically the same result, it inhibits commercial development. And tufsu spare me the "it's a state/federal road, they were mandated" argument, almost all of the rest of main both north and south of Springfield doesn't have them, it was one more SPAR decision the rest of us get to live with.

Yep. I've said this same thing all along. As soon as I saw the finished product (coupled w the removal of bus stops), I knew it was a killer. Its going to be nearly impossible to recover from it until its redone (with people who's agenda is to actually promote walkability instead of hamper it). But I'm afraid that'll be a long way off since it was just redone.

Springfield is a cool area (prob the coolest urban area in the city as far as uniqueness, layout & history), but its going to have a really tough time attracting businesses & people in the near future. People look at of as tainted goods. Not to mention, it doesn't feed off other close by areas like the hoods of Riverside does. All Spr has is downtown, which is still pretty stagnant. So IMO you won't see these things getting better until downtown gets its shit together, and Riverside starts busting at the seams.

There's other issues of course (like the ridiculous rents some people charge for storefronts in Spr), but I think those are the main ones just from personal observations.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: tufsu1 on August 22, 2013, 10:40:57 AM
And tufsu spare me the "it's a state/federal road, they were mandated" argument, almost all of the rest of main both north and south of Springfield doesn't have them, it was one more SPAR decision the rest of us get to live with.

1. I wouldn't say the medians were mandated by state/federal law...although undivided arterials (those without turn lanes) are strongly discouarged by FDOT

2. I don't beleive any of the other north-south roads in Springfield are state facilities
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on August 22, 2013, 10:51:57 AM
Quote
The stupid medians on Main Street and the removal of bus stops will continue to inhibit commercial viability until reversed. Both SPAR initiatives naturally. Removing the bus stops eliminated a lot of blue collar but employed foot traffic, and the medians make it a hassle to get to a particular storefront, not to mention they've had the effect of creating something of an expressway with much faster traffic than before. In every city I've seen install those medians it's basically the same result, it inhibits commercial development. And tufsu spare me the "it's a state/federal road, they were mandated" argument, almost all of the rest of main both north and south of Springfield doesn't have them, it was one more SPAR decision the rest of us get to live with.
Unquote
Above completely untrue, except I do not know about the "inhibition".  Some of the first things I saw when I came into Springfield in 2000 were the beautiful Main Street Plans on the walls of the Historic Springfield Community Council (HSCC).  Glorious drawings. HSCC had offices in the Woman's Club Building.  Phil Neary was president and he fought for Main Street restoration.  The medians were put back as restoration of the original ones, sadly we could not get trolley tracks on them  The rest of Main Street does not fall under historic guidelines, as does our section.  The idea was to try to recreate.  One of the engineers who supervised the Main Street redo, said he regretted not making the historic part of Main single lane with nose in parking in the other lane.  Bus stops are not a local entity decision.  SPAR was not really involved in Main Street until after the merger of HSCC and SPAR.    As to the decision on the plantings that was done at community meetings held by GAI, I just wish we had gone for palm trees.

Just a couple of comments. To start with, if there were no medians, they would not have spent the state Millions on Main street. The medians are not to restore the old ones but simply the current thinking from the FDOT. That is why the upper end of Main also has medians again.  If FDOT believed no medians was the way to go back then, there would be no medians.  The same goes for the closed left turn lanes.  The FDOT wants to move traffic, and not have people walking around. If there were bike lanes, there would be NO parking.  The whole angled parking thing was discussed and the FDOT said no way.  (all my info comes from Phil Neary, who was integral to those discussions). The bit of Main Street that has it was Privately Funded by grants not paid by the FDOT which is how they got away with keeping it.  Farley is correct that this was not a SPAR thing.  In fact, SPAR started the project and dropped the ball.  HSCC picked it up and got it done.  It is far better to have new infrastructure with medians than sagging streets. I keep hearing how bad the medians and closed turn lanes are but also how much you want a walkable Main Street. The things many complain about being gone make for better driving not walking. Perhaps rather than complaining about Main, we need to take what we have and find positives to talk about like how we can utilize the empty small lots for parking and promote walking a couple of blocks.  Of course, to get people to want to do that, there has to be something, anything to walk to.

The cost of store fronts is not overly high at this point, when compared to all of Jax, but just higher than a business can justify when the local org was trying to say who could and couldn't have a business and what kinds of businesses could open there.  And SPAR did have a hand in closing bus stops.  It was often discussed as a way to reduce litter and the undesirables hanging out. That serves as a great example of how rubber tired public transport will never promote development as it can be changed on a whim and cost businesses large percentages of their clientele. Of course, if the community leadership doesn't like the businesses that are there, then changing the bus stops to facilitate the loss of businesses works for them.

The Historic Springfield commercial corridor has it's best chance of success right now.  The people with the most influence from SPAR are gone, the money is much tighter and so perhaps the natural process will take place.  If the city can be convinced the the best use of a fixed rail street car is up Main to promote that development, it might just work in our life time.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 22, 2013, 08:52:32 PM
I will go against and state I happen to like the medians.  They add green and color and de-sterilize the street. I live less than one mile from the "shore"  Belmont Shore to be exact.  It is a bustling middle-upper class area that has, gheesh, probably the length of Springfield's Main Street 1st to 10th, that is FILLED with stores and a great big giant median running through the two lane (two lanes each side) street.  There are lights and walkways at each street.  Belmont Shore can not be compared to Springfield due to it's location and neighborhood, however my comment is about the median and it doesn't prevent foot or car traffic due to the density of the storefronts/eateries/services.   
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: chris farley on August 22, 2013, 09:02:43 PM
I love the medians and I wish the historic part of Main was single lane it would make for a much softer and cozier area and allow for more parking.   We just have to try and get grants or facade money, so much could be done to the beautiful buildings on Main if the junk, - aluminum and fieldstone was pulled off the store fronts and the lovely old transoms exposed.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: peestandingup on August 22, 2013, 09:15:38 PM
I will go against and state I happen to like the medians.  They add green and color and de-sterilize the street. I live less than one mile from the "shore"  Belmont Shore to be exact.  It is a bustling middle-upper class area that has, gheesh, probably the length of Springfield's Main Street 1st to 10th, that is FILLED with stores and a great big giant median running through the two lane (two lanes each side) street.  There are lights and walkways at each street.  Belmont Shore can not be compared to Springfield due to it's location and neighborhood, however my comment is about the median and it doesn't prevent foot or car traffic due to the density of the storefronts/eateries/services.

Is their main drag a highway though with cars running 40+ MPH?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 22, 2013, 09:22:51 PM
The big negative with the medians is the elimination of full vehicular access to half the perpendicular streets intersecting with Main.  The reduction of access alone, negatively impacts the commercial value of the lots/buildings at those intersections by limiting the amount of potential uses.  For example, pharmacies like Walgreens and CVS shy away from full access non-signalized intersections.   

Although no big deal, they also have no historical connection to what Main once was.  Any true historic connection would have at least made an attempt at having a similar median width.  Main's medians are simply a function of access management to improve traffic flow on an FDOT maintained arterial highway.  FDOT has been doing this all across the state.  I've even had to privilege to work on a few access management projects throughout my career.

However, it is what it is.  They aren't going anywhere, so it's time to move on.  One thing the Main Street streetscape project (Philip Randolph in the Eastside also) really illustrates is there's more to stimulating economic revitalization than simply beautifying streets and sidewalks. I wonder if something like Florida's Main Street Program would be ideal for Springfield?

http://www.flheritage.com/preservation/mainstreet/

Has this been tried locally before?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 22, 2013, 09:40:39 PM
pees.  the cars can't go 40+ mph.  too many street lights they have to stop at, forcing slow down.  we bike down to eat and shop as opposed to driving, but if forced to drive for some reason, I stick to the parallel streets behind the main thoroughfare. 

I think we all agree.  It's there.  Not going anywhere.  Find a way to make it work.  I agree with Chris Farley about the façade front curb appeal.  A group in Springfield needs to focus (in my opinion) entirely on Main Street and getting business in.  Whether they partner with owners, spar, the city, women's club, or whoever to make it happen, it needs to happen.  Another opinion: it is my belief that the absence of a strong Main Street with stores/business/eateries is what keeps buyers OUT of our hood, NOT vacant unloved homes, an eclectic social class, empty lots, blight.  A lack of a vibrant Main Street stifles the hood. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bridges on August 23, 2013, 08:37:07 AM
Count me in the I hate the medians group, but I also hate the whole design of main.  Cars most certainly drive 40+ on Main.  Traffic lights aren't stop signs.  In fact, as was pointed out in the thread about San Marco, the lights can often encourage people to hurry so they can make the next one.  Main street is clear, the car is king. 

A group in Springfield needs to focus (in my opinion) entirely on Main Street and getting business in.  Whether they partner with owners, spar, the city, women's club, or whoever to make it happen, it needs to happen.  Another opinion: it is my belief that the absence of a strong Main Street with stores/business/eateries is what keeps buyers OUT of our hood, NOT vacant unloved homes, an eclectic social class, empty lots, blight.  A lack of a vibrant Main Street stifles the hood. 

Absolutely agree 100%.  This is my #1 thing too.  But I think putting the pedestrian first is a huge step. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on August 23, 2013, 12:18:00 PM
Count me in the I hate the medians group, but I also hate the whole design of main.  Cars most certainly drive 40+ on Main.  Traffic lights aren't stop signs.  In fact, as was pointed out in the thread about San Marco, the lights can often encourage people to hurry so they can make the next one.  Main street is clear, the car is king. 

A group in Springfield needs to focus (in my opinion) entirely on Main Street and getting business in.  Whether they partner with owners, spar, the city, women's club, or whoever to make it happen, it needs to happen.  Another opinion: it is my belief that the absence of a strong Main Street with stores/business/eateries is what keeps buyers OUT of our hood, NOT vacant unloved homes, an eclectic social class, empty lots, blight.  A lack of a vibrant Main Street stifles the hood. 

Absolutely agree 100%.  This is my #1 thing too.  But I think putting the pedestrian first is a huge step. 

+100

I'm not sure how you can really have a well-reasoned opinion on this topic that varies from what you've stated, just go look at the damn thing, it's obvious in the first 5 minutes.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: sheclown on August 23, 2013, 01:22:06 PM
from Myspringfield.org

(but look at the "Jiffy Mart" comment at 1:27 )

http://www.youtube.com/v/zh9ujCYwnWc?hl=en_US&version=3&rel=0

I appreciate the hard work that these pioneers put into the designation, but the war on Jiffy Marts may explain some of the trouble we are in today.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: I-10east on August 23, 2013, 08:55:49 PM
My take on the Main Street medians. I disagree with notion that the medians in any way encourages 'high speed drag racing' on Main St or whatever. As a driver, I'm not fond of them as they could interfere with left turns, causing you to do a U turn, instead of a left turn on businesses away from the intersections; In contrast, I would like would like the medians as a pedestrian, as you're essentially crossing two 2 lane roads 'sort of speak'  with relief on the median, than one full four lane street.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 23, 2013, 08:56:53 PM
I once eluded publicly that I was ready and able to "take on Main Street. "  Take it on like I (and other dedicated preservationists) took on preservation for our housing stock. 

I do recall that was not received well by some in the community and I was politely asked to stick with houses.  That only led me to believe that (at that time) the folks in the neighborhood position of "authority" or at least decision making didn't want to see success with Main Street retail and restaurants.

As not too much has happened at a pace I would think it could, I think that mentality still exists. 

I really, really want to see a vibrant Main Street.  A main street that will stick around and last and draw people to the hood.  I think Murray Hill is darling and that is a great starting point (and maybe finishing point) who knows.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on August 24, 2013, 09:15:46 AM
Thanks to SPAR and MCC there are lots of nice empty lots in that first half block on many of the numbered streets.  These lots are all zoned either CRO-S or CCG-S.  On fact, one of West 7th street was turned into a parking lot years ago, though it was later given to SRG - not sure who owns it now.  I have never understood why some of these small lots can't be turned into parking lots - perhaps even put up little facades to hide the cars and make them look cool.  If they can be done either at or one block away from the available left turns, certainly free parking will result in people walking those couple of blocks to the businesses and restaurants, assuming they ever come to Main St.  Parking will also be very important if there is ever a street car system back on Main.  The people from further North will park and ride to other destinations. Perhaps even to work. 

SPAR Council did a parking study of sorts with LISC funding.  It might be worth looking at again to see it's recommendations.

The point is simply that we have a Main Street that is the way it is.  Maybe it will change in fifty years, but certainly not today.  If we want street car eventually, the current medians don't hurt.  But this being the 21st century and all, we also need to accommodate the cars, probably for the next next fifty years or so at least. Seems like if we want a vibrant Main Street, we need to take what we have and run with it and not sit around and complain about what we have nor can we wait around hoping for a Sachs Fifth Avenue to open up.

Some believe that a street car should go to Riverside first.  I think because that is where they see current, new development.  Others believe that we should use street car to promote new development and that the place that needs it the most, like Springfield should get it.  Unfortunately, as this is Jacksonville, we all are just hoping street cars happens at all.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 24, 2013, 09:48:22 AM
The reason some believe a streetcar should go to Riverside first is that you get a corridor that connects two major destinations (Riverside/Downtown) while also stimulating development in Brooklyn (away from Riverside Ave) and LaVilla. The combination of those two points results in higher initial ridership and TOD potential, which makes it easier to expand to a larger system. You can also tap into something like the mobility plan because it helps alleviate roads that are predicted to be congested in the future.

As for a streetcar on Main, the medians are irrelevant. They aren't wide enough, so tracks would have to share lanes with cars (or convince FDOT to do a lane diet) or run down a wide parallel street like Hubbard.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on August 24, 2013, 09:49:14 AM
My take on the Main Street medians. I disagree with notion that the medians in any way encourages 'high speed drag racing' on Main St or whatever. As a driver, I'm not fond of them as they could interfere with left turns, causing you to do a U turn, instead of a left turn on businesses away from the intersections; In contrast, I would like would like the medians as a pedestrian, as you're essentially crossing two 2 lane roads 'sort of speak'  with relief on the median, than one full four lane street.

Sure they do, because you don't have as many people turning, there's no center lane so you don't have to worry about anyone pulling out in front of you, and it inhibits pedestrians crossing anywhere but the intersections, and only then on a red light, because they'd have to climb through bushes. This all combines to speed up traffic, since you've created a virtual expressway and there's no reason really to go slow, since there's nothing to watch out for. I've personally noticed faster traffic on main since the medians went in.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Debbie Thompson on August 24, 2013, 12:22:23 PM
Stephen, re: the Woman's Club.   I don't know who provided you the information you got, but in the interest of fairness, please allow me to clarify.  I was at the meeting when we voted to de-federate from the GFWC. It sounds like you perhaps got a skewed version of what happened by someone who must not have been there.  Because the way the meeting went, it  was very, very clear.

Although our two time president, May Mann Jennings, pushed for and was instrumental in, the formation of the Florida Federation of Women's Clubs, the Springfield Improvement Association (the 2nd oldest in Florida) didn't federate until the late 1950's.  Can't remember now if it was 1957 or 1959.    I always wondered about that.  I wondered if they somehow lost our original federation papers because surely we would have "followed our leader" and federated early on.  Maybe not though. The Springfield club is "different."  When other clubs in recent years were holding drives to raise money for GFWC/FFWC causes instead of neighborhood causes, we were working on things in Springfield.  As the Springfield Improvement Association was formed to do in 1904.  To improve the quality of life in Springfield.

At the meeting where the vote was taken, we discussed that for a long time, we have not been involved in things GFWC/FFWC related.  (For example, we don't raise funds for the FFWC president's service project.  We don't hold opening teas in September.  We don't go to FFWC annual meetings. We don't turn in scrapbooks for the scrapbook contest.)  Our dues are only $25 a year, and $20 or more of that went to the GFWC for member fees, while we were not really involved in Federation causes or activities.

That said, when the vote was taken (and this is the first time I've said this) I marked my ballot no.  I thought we should stay associated with the wider GFWC, or at least postpone the vote and think about it some more.  But then I didn't turn my ballot in.  Essentially, I abstained.  The sentiment and discussion from everyone else at the meeting focused around the fact we should not have to send all our dues money to an organization we were not really participating in.   Everyone else voted yes to de-federate.   Everyone.  I don't know if it was the right or wrong thing to do.   But if you are inferring by the information you received a certain Englishwoman made us do it, whoever told you something along those lines was mistaken.  Yes, Chris thought we should de-federate to save our money for other things. But if everyone else had not thought so too, it would not have happened.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Debbie Thompson on August 24, 2013, 12:27:14 PM
Oh...about those medians on Main Street.  I don't like them.  But they aren't why we don't have Main Street businesses.  Miracle Mile in Coral Gables was doing OK in the mid-1960's when I lived in Miami, and not only did they have a median, they didn't allow u-turns either.

I think instead of looking back and pointing fingers at past mistakes, the thing to do is look forward and figure out what to do next.  Just my 2 cents, FWIW.  (2 cents, I guess, huh?  LOL)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: I-10east on August 24, 2013, 01:57:16 PM
Sure they do, because you don't have as many people turning, there's no center lane so you don't have to worry about anyone pulling out in front of you, and it inhibits pedestrians crossing anywhere but the intersections, and only then on a red light, because they'd have to climb through bushes. This all combines to speed up traffic, since you've created a virtual expressway and there's no reason really to go slow, since there's nothing to watch out for. I've personally noticed faster traffic on main since the medians went in.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I wouldn't speed on Main for two simple reasons; Consistent police presence of Main, and that I know that it's a pedestrian area; Just because Main has a tree lined median doesn't make it Arlington Expressway (a place pedestrians shouldn't be). When I travelling on Main, I never witnessed any blatant flooring of the pedal. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 24, 2013, 02:48:20 PM
Nuts.  But the 'problem' is the medians?

Well ok.  it does make it harder to attract new shops.  But Houston, I think you are missed the whole nuclear explosion while we are trying to identify the source of the electrical fire.

Nearly everything thing you described would have been something that took place a few years ago.  What's the reason for continued little activity?  Something tells me it's more of a complex network of several issues that may be much larger than Springfield itself.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JayBird on August 24, 2013, 07:02:37 PM
Sure they do, because you don't have as many people turning, there's no center lane so you don't have to worry about anyone pulling out in front of you, and it inhibits pedestrians crossing anywhere but the intersections, and only then on a red light, because they'd have to climb through bushes. This all combines to speed up traffic, since you've created a virtual expressway and there's no reason really to go slow, since there's nothing to watch out for. I've personally noticed faster traffic on main since the medians went in.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I wouldn't speed on Main for two simple reasons; Consistent police presence of Main, and that I know that it's a pedestrian area; Just because Main has a tree lined median doesn't make it Arlington Expressway (a place pedestrians shouldn't be). When I travelling on Main, I never witnessed any blatant flooring of the pedal.

Well thats one.  Too bad the other few hundred thousand drivers dont have the same instincts.

Actually I must confess that I speed through here on the regular. I blame it on my Jersey blood and if I'm headed north out of DT Main Street is quicker. Unlike 95/295, cops can't hide on the median and there aren't any good hiding spot along the roadside. So you know they'll be coming up behind or you'll be passing them. When I come through around 5:30 on Thursday nights en route to Oceanway, I am keeping with traffic at 40-45 mph. Also, I have more pedestrian traffic in my subdivision than I've ever witnessed on Main Street, even when I lived in Springfield. And on the weekends or late nights, I've been known to push 50 from Trout River all the way to the bridge to hook up with 95. On my bike, even quicker.

As for medians causing the higher speeds, kind of. Like I said it limits where you have to look for threats, however north of historic area speeding is just as prevalent because it is so wide. And we all know if you time the lights right you can get from 8th street to the Main St Bridge and never have to stop, but you so have to keep it above 35.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bridges on August 24, 2013, 10:25:59 PM
Nuts.  But the 'problem' is the medians?

Well ok.  it does make it harder to attract new shops.  But Houston, I think you are missed the whole nuclear explosion while we are trying to identify the source of the electrical fire.

Nearly everything thing you described would have been something that took place a few years ago.  What's the reason for continued little activity?  Something tells me it's more of a complex network of several issues that may be much larger than Springfield itself.

There are lots of reasons that Main street isn't working right now.  I'm no expert on transportation planning or historic development or even terms like "road diet".  All I know is that if you design an area to funnel cars from State st. to MLK with as little speed restrictions or obstruction as possible, you'll design an undesirable walking area for business.

Lets take the once proposed Julia Urban Grocery for example. That property is on 5th.  There is no median break or cross walk for that area right now.

I understand that the medians are there now,  and nothing will happen to remove them in the immediate future.  But things can be done to increase the walkability of the area.  Angled parking,dedicated bike lanes, etc. in fact the strip of main street from 1st to 8th, is perfect for something like the tactical urbanism we've discussed here. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 12:35:21 AM
Even with the medians, people still cross, they just j-walk. I know I do. Ultimately, I think it's a mix of building renovation costs, lease rates, too many demolished buildings and Main being designed to support more retail than the neighborhood can actually support. Also, I think the construction of I-95 hurt Main by siphoning most of it's through traffic off of it.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on August 25, 2013, 10:55:51 AM
I don't think anyone was saying the medians were the only cause, Stephen...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 25, 2013, 01:11:00 PM
Quote
Step 1 - We admitted we were powerless over our addiction - that our lives had become unmanageable 

Step 2 - Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity 

Step 3 - Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God 

Step 4 - Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves 

Step 5 - Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs 

Step 6 - Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character 

Step 7 - Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings 

Step 8 - Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all 

Step 9 - Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others 

Step 10 - Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted
it 

Step 11 - Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God's will for us and the power to carry that out 

Step 12 - Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs

The neighborhood might start at step 8.

It might help to apologize to Van Winkel, Gloria and Joe, Hionides, Steve Flores, the family and friends of Kiko Battles, Bethel Baptist, the Pawn shop building owners, the eritrean family that owns the Convenience stores, the historic Rooming houses, the owners of the properties who had their investments demolished, silas at the car wash, me and john, Carlos and Anita, etc.

Then go on to step 9 and try and make amends.  There are things that the neighborhood could still do to create outcomes to all of the things they attempted to change by destroying people.  At least take an oath to stop trying to hurt or destroy people who disagree.

Just the simple act of doing these things would be enough to restore jump start the momentum again.  It would at least mitigate the opposite trope that is presently determining the future out there.


Stephen.  I absolutely agree.  The natives need to make amends by apologizing and move forward with a spirit of the Golden Rule.  And while some of those natives may be long gone, the folks in their positions and community groups they once represented need to recognize that the culture needs to be changed.  By culture I mean by attitudes and actions. 
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 01:14:54 PM
That's great but we'll need a lot more than apologies to create a market fill Main Street. The same goes for most older commercial corridors in Jax and the rest of the country.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 01:16:49 PM
I don't think anyone was saying the medians were the only cause, Stephen...
This. I'll provide more detail when I get back in from Atlanta.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: peestandingup on August 25, 2013, 02:15:20 PM
That's great but we'll need a lot more than apologies to create a market fill Main Street. The same goes for most older commercial corridors in Jax and the rest of the country.

You sure do, but in Springfield's case, I think it will be a good long while before the rest of all that 'lot more' will happen until you correct the conventions---which are still at play.

I agree with this. If the rents are cheap enough, the homes affordable enough, the destruction stops & the neighborhood boards stay out of everyones's business, then people will come. Seems like this was where things were going until the circus came to town & get rich quick investors swamped the place, ran it into the ground, then skipped out after things went south.

Sure, Main will still be a nightmare for pedestrians, but that isn't changing anytime soon. What I mentioned above is your best shot.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 25, 2013, 02:31:07 PM
The heart needs to be healed first.  No Band-Aids either.  Real therapeutic healing.  Then everything else discussed above about reviving Main Street and our other viable commercial corridors can begin with a solid base.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 03:22:06 PM
The heart needs to be healed first.  No Band-Aids either.  Real therapeutic healing.  Then everything else discussed above about reviving Main Street and our other viable commercial corridors can begin with a solid base.
I have properties in the Main Street corridor, both in and outside of the historic district. Unfortunately, all the apologies in the world don't help in making their development more feasible. I've been working to get one, right in the core of the district, off the ground for over a year now. The market is simply not there for the amount of cash it would take me to invest to pull it off. Quite frankly, if I'm searching for development opportunities,iI'd get a hell of a better return putting it into my Atlanta-based investment group or potential investment deals in DC and Cincinnati.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 04:01:05 PM
King is a different animal. It's more comparable toa small section of Main, than the entire corridor, IMO. It's also in Riverside. Springfield has the same problem as DT. There's a gap between cost to do something vs. acceptable market lease rates/yield, ROI, etc. to make investment worthwhile from the private side. I love Springfield but not enough to bankrupt myself.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 04:18:13 PM
My point is that there's more to this and a lot of it predates the last decade. I'll lay that argument out with graphics when I get back to town.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 04:36:09 PM
For starters, building conditions are still shitty, getting bank financing is more difficult, there are better investment options out there, the majority of building stock was demolished in the mid-20th century for car lots...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 25, 2013, 04:44:51 PM
Also, in 1995 I said I wanted to have 7 kids and that I would retire at age 21. In short, after getting more involved directly over the last five years, my perspective has changed.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Demosthenes on August 30, 2013, 12:25:23 PM
It seems that there are two issues here. One is historical hurt feelings. I dont understand why anyone would want to pick the scab? If the bad people are gone, then the healing has already started. Why pick at it?

Second, any business that wants to survive, MUST draw from outside of the neighborhood. Relying on the small revitalization community is a recipe for disaster, no matter how well received the business is.

There is no way to hold a gun to the communities head and demand they either frequent, or avoid any business. In places where a group threatened legal action, or used code to keep someone from opening, I agree, that is a problem, but in cases where it was a whisper campaign, who really cares? Good services, and a good product trumps all.

I remember some people complaining about the Mural on the side of Shantytown, then there were two serious violent events on the site, and an immediate neighbor has been openly hostile, but Shanty has persisted for 5+ years.

Shanty also pulls from all across the city, in addition to its loyal local clientele.

A business cannot move into the neighborhood, open a crappy business, throw a bow on it, and expect it to work because a few people hope it will. The economics have to work, regardless of how friendly any neighborhood organization is, or is not.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on August 30, 2013, 12:54:29 PM
The neighborhood has a number of successful businesses.....most of which are not on the main commercial corridors.

In my opinion, the question isn't whether a quality biz can make it, plenty have, but why aren't they on Main or 8th Streets?

Because they're scattered about without clustering, they can't feed off eachothers success and often go unnoticed by the general public.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on August 30, 2013, 01:19:11 PM
The neighborhood has a number of successful businesses.....most of which are not on the main commercial corridors.

In my opinion, the question isn't whether a quality biz can make it, plenty have, but why aren't they on Main or 8th Streets?

Because they're scattered about without clustering, they can't feed off eachothers success and often go unnoticed by the general public.

Part of my question is rhetorical. For example, Red Fin Group recently decided to purchase and move into a cool building on E. 10th Street. They considered at least one property on Main (the Earl Horne building) but the asking price was astronomically unrealistic. That's not a unique situation on Main St.

Thankfully, there are some good opprotunities out there right now. The former 'The Pearl' building and the would-be 'Julie's Urban Grocery' building can both be had for a price that generally reflects market conditions. Some of Van Horn's former lots on 8th have/should be becoming available as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 30, 2013, 01:39:58 PM
Thankfully, there are some good opprotunities out there right now. The former 'The Pearl' building and the would-be 'Julie's Urban Grocery' building can both be had for a price that generally reflects market conditions.

What's the asking price on these spaces?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Tony B on August 30, 2013, 03:18:28 PM
When we contacted Petra real estate about the Ed Horne building @ 1st and Main we were informed that the owner was in great financial shape and was not motivated to sell the property and that the price of the building wasn't set but it was "well over $1.0 million."  A shocking number as I thinking they would be asking less than $200k considering the poor shape the place is in.

When you consider the condition of the building - that only the only structurally sound part of the building are the outside walls and it would be need to be completely rebuilt (roof, windows, HVAC, wiring, plumbing, remediation of environmental concerns, etc.) that would push the price of the building and property including renovations to 1.5 to 1.8 million.  An absurd price for that property in that location.  No reasonable business person would pay that much for that property and no bank would lend on it. 

The Pearl is a great building (IMHO) at a workable asking price ($220k I think) but it's too small for our needs and a two story business space doesn't fit us.

We also considered the former Boomtown space but it's lack of parking, high price and condition stopped us short.  I think the asking price is $400k? and it is currently just a shell and like the Ed Horne building needs a complete rebuild. 

There is a smaller building on Main that looks a lot like a mini version of the Boomtown building asking price I think is $80k - that one is pretty attractive IMHO. Too small for us but hopefully someone will grab it and turn it into something.


The neighborhood has a number of successful businesses.....most of which are not on the main commercial corridors.

In my opinion, the question isn't whether a quality biz can make it, plenty have, but why aren't they on Main or 8th Streets?

Because they're scattered about without clustering, they can't feed off eachothers success and often go unnoticed by the general public.

Part of my question is rhetorical. For example, Red Fin Group recently decided to purchase and move into a cool building on E. 10th Street. They considered at least one property on Main (the Earl Horne building) but the asking price was astronomically unrealistic. That's not a unique situation on Main St.

Thankfully, there are some good opprotunities out there right now. The former 'The Pearl' building and the would-be 'Julie's Urban Grocery' building can both be had for a price that generally reflects market conditions. Some of Van Horn's former lots on 8th have/should be becoming available as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on August 31, 2013, 08:07:06 AM
While a million may be high for the old Earl Horne building, it is not unusual for an owner to want back what he paid for it.   Today, that often doesn't work out too well.  That said, I wonder what is really going on with this building  as the taxes have not been paid for four years and back taxes are at about $52K.  The tax info states the LLC is in bankruptcy and so I question the info given by Petra about it. 

Quote
Prior Year Taxes Due
Year     Folio     Status     Cert.     Cert. Yr.     Amount     
2012    1114001    BK    0    0    $12,168.43    
2009    1112773    BK    12423    2010    $8,968.87    
2010    1113730    BK    0    0    $17,386.53    
2011    1113830    BK    0    0    $14,141.77    
 
BK = BANKRUPTCY
 
Prior Years Total     $52,665.60


It appears that once it actually hit bankruptcy, the city can't sell the tax certificates and so the owner of the 2009 one can't call for a tax sale?  Does someone know how this works?  It seems to me that the owner is not in very good shape and that the building is most likely tied up in a legal mess. 

While it has been years since I have been in this building, it wasn't that bad then.  Like often happens, the roofs suffer when no one is taking care of the building and as it appears the owner is broke, this is another one we need to worry about.  It was, I believe, designed by a fairly well known architect as a car dealership and is an important part of Main Street in Historic Springfield.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Demosthenes on August 31, 2013, 12:31:06 PM
Is there any proof that anyone is using code to shut down businesses? It seems a pretty circumstantial claim without proof, and the woman being vilified who used to be with SPAR left the neighborhood 4 years ago. Any proof from this decade?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on August 31, 2013, 01:09:16 PM
Can we get this (the chair on sidewalk thing) verified?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Demosthenes on August 31, 2013, 03:22:01 PM
Absolutely it would apply. Is there proof?

Also, four years ago is 2009 aka last decade. Yes, its semantics, but four years is a long time.

As far as the forums, I check in from time to time. I see a lot of hearsay hand wringing and finger pointing. I have also seen when you have actual proof. You jump all over it. So, lets see the proof.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on August 31, 2013, 04:26:25 PM
Check out the SPAR facebook post on June 11th promoting the new tattoo shop.

I personally visited the shop and welcomed them, as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on August 31, 2013, 08:50:20 PM
Usually creativity is an attribute I admire.

But steering back to the subject, $219, 000 for 'The Pearl' building is decent, no?

I am not familiar with the finer points of accounting or tax law, so I couldn't speak to the status on the Earl Horne building.

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on August 31, 2013, 09:23:37 PM
Didn't Trautmann buy the Pearl this summer?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsquid on August 31, 2013, 10:52:23 PM
Is there any proof that anyone is using code to shut down businesses? It seems a pretty circumstantial claim without proof, and the woman being vilified who used to be with SPAR left the neighborhood 4 years ago. Any proof from this decade?

Demosthenes.  You must not have been reading the forums for long.  Just for reference however, 4 years ago is within a decade.

Latest victim of harassment:  The tattoo shop on Main street that closed its doors after being open for a month.

There were numerous calls, and various agencies all coming to the african american owned shop.  Apparently one of the tattoo artists was told that he couldnt sit on a chair on the outside of the building.

Is two months ago recent enough?

that's insane to me
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Demosthenes on August 31, 2013, 11:02:04 PM
Surely there is a paper trail for these events.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: iloveionia on September 02, 2013, 01:05:56 PM
"Developing Springfield Tour"

Urban Land Institute (ULI) of North Florida, along with SAMBA, Springfield Area Merchants and Business Association, is hosting a special bus tour of Springfield for ULI Members and invited guests. Please join us on September 26 as we explore the commercial corridor of Springfield.

Registration will begin at 4:30 pm and the bus tour will begin at 4:45 pm. The tour will end by 6:00 pm at 3rd Street and Main Street. Highlights will include new development in the area, Uptown Market, Three Layers, Baker Klein Engineering, Community Gardens, and a special gift from Sweet Pete’s.

The registration fee is $35.

http://myspringfield.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=17200#p17200

Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on September 10, 2013, 04:01:41 PM
Lakelander,

Info on the other property mentioned (1501 N. Main):
Asking $145,000. Complete civil and landscape plans, structural and environmental studies, and the architectural and building plans are 80% complete.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on September 10, 2013, 04:20:37 PM
Thank you sir!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JayBird on September 23, 2013, 06:38:42 PM
So I found this pic courtesy of WJXT4 Facebook page, showings home in the Walden Chase subdivision in Ponte Vedra. The owner has apparently refused to cut the grass for three years now. In Ponte Vedra, the most expensive zip code in northeast Florida. Kind of makes one wonder how much these neighborhood associations, RAP, SPAR an others really help th value of investing in the neighborhood.

(http://i.imgur.com/QHhjsRd.jpg)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Springfielder on September 28, 2013, 02:36:42 PM
LOL...and I'm sure code enforcements been out there, and there's rolling fines on the property  ::)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Cheshire Cat on September 28, 2013, 04:02:32 PM
The owner and the homeowners association are locked in a legal battle, but the homeowner apparently has better standing under the law.  Turns out they also have a property in California that looks the same way and has provoked a similar battle.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: DDC on May 26, 2014, 10:19:37 PM
Interesting. Of all the above shops, only Krystals and Hola are open.

Adels is open at Cottage and Main. Something, I think a thrift shop is in Pasco Hardware. The place with the flags and no name is Island Tropics at 16th and Main, is open unless it closed sometime recently.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AuditoreEnterprise on May 27, 2014, 01:51:54 AM
I got food poisoning from krystals there on Friday evening... hopefully I'm a rare case but they will be closed if that happens to a few more people...
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on May 27, 2014, 06:42:42 AM
Interesting. Of all the above shops, only Krystals and Hola are open.

Adels is open at Cottage and Main. Something, I think a thrift shop is in Pasco Hardware. The place with the flags and no name is Island Tropics at 16th and Main, is open unless it closed sometime recently.


Yeah, Main is about the same as it was when I made that post six years ago.....which isn't saying much. A few places have closed and a few have opened. The same could be said about most places in town, outside of Regency Mall. The key for Main is to find a way to have double, triple or more the amount of openings as closings during the same time period.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: valashay on May 27, 2014, 07:53:34 AM
Yes.. Carl's on 8th and Main is open...Wafa is open for business Tunis is open ...we have a Massage Salon...if more viable businesses come we will support.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Noone on May 27, 2014, 07:54:49 AM
A viable retail market? Remember 2013-384 a year ago and the armory for a buck and zero access to Hogans Creek. imagine an organic, spontaneous, cluster of positive active interaction with a node of transient (Food Truck, Bike, Kayak)retail engagement.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Tacachale on May 27, 2014, 01:03:40 PM
Interesting. Of all the above shops, only Krystals and Hola are open.

Adels is open at Cottage and Main. Something, I think a thrift shop is in Pasco Hardware. The place with the flags and no name is Island Tropics at 16th and Main, is open unless it closed sometime recently.


Yeah, Main is about the same as it was when I made that post six years ago.....which isn't saying much. A few places have closed and a few have opened. The same could be said about most places in town, outside of Regency Mall. The key for Main is to find a way to have double, triple or more the amount of openings as closings during the same time period.

That will definitely be the key, unfortunately it doesn't seem there's much inclination to help it along.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: mtraininjax on May 28, 2014, 07:17:03 AM
Quote
Yeah, Main is about the same as it was when I made that post six years ago.....which isn't saying much.

You think the economy and current conditions of Main Street go hand in hand? Our economy is improving all over the city, it will improve in Springfield too, when people feel more confident. It will happen. It will come back.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JayBird on July 29, 2014, 04:08:43 PM
My phone is being finicky today and doesn't seem to want to cut and paste a link, but JBJ has a great article about some new retail coming to Springfield.Highlights: a hookah bar moving into the eclectic purple bldg on Main, a reuse for The Pearl (which I thought would sit vacant for years), and new neighborhood retail on Pearl Street.



Addendum: I know this thread is long, but it seems apt. I hate when you have to jump multiple threads of people repeating same stuff looking for new info mixed in.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: AuditoreEnterprise on July 29, 2014, 04:36:19 PM
My phone is being finicky today and doesn't seem to want to cut and paste a link, but JBJ has a great article about some new retail coming to Springfield.Highlights: a hookah bar moving into the eclectic purple bldg on Main, a reuse for The Pearl (which I thought would sit vacant for years), and new neighborhood retail on Pearl Street.



Addendum: I know this thread is long, but it seems apt. I hate when you have to jump multiple threads of people repeating same stuff looking for new info mixed in.

from what I have heard the pearl is going to be some sort of Co-op place it is a cool building indeed.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 29, 2014, 09:39:04 PM
My phone is being finicky today and doesn't seem to want to cut and paste a link, but JBJ has a great article about some new retail coming to Springfield.Highlights: a hookah bar moving into the eclectic purple bldg on Main, a reuse for The Pearl (which I thought would sit vacant for years), and new neighborhood retail on Pearl Street.



Addendum: I know this thread is long, but it seems apt. I hate when you have to jump multiple threads of people repeating same stuff looking for new info mixed in.

Here you go!

Quote
New life coming to Main Street with retail shop announcements

A long beleaguered neighborhood of the urban core is seeing new life, with several retail outlets announcing plans to move into the Springfield neighborhood.

Over the next six months, at least four businesses plan on opening up in the neighborhood, including three on Main Street.

One of those new shops, the Serenity Tea and Hookah Lounge at 1715 N. Main St., will open its doors in early September.

The lounge will offer a variety of foods and desserts, as well as wine, beer, tea and coffee, owner Gail Harris said. The shop will also offer free Wi-Fi, live music, entertainment and, of course, a vast array of hookah flavors.

A few blocks away from Main Street, The Birdhouse Café will set up shop in the former Fusion Art Wine Jazz bar at 1827 N Pearl St. The cafe will offer food, live music, beer and wine.

full article: http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2014/07/29/new-life-coming-to-main-street-with-retail-shop.html
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 29, 2014, 09:41:18 PM
More from the JBJ...

Quote
What Main Street announcements mean for Springfield

Plans by a handful of retailers to set up shop on and near Main Street may be signs of life for the Springfield neighborhood, which has struggled to attract a critical mass of businesses.

“There are a lot of cool things happening in Springfield,” said Bill Hoff, president of the Springfield Preservation and Revitalization group. “A lot of them are still working on the final product, but in six months there should be quite a few new shops."

full article: http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2014/07/29/what-main-street-announcements-mean-for.html
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JayBird on July 29, 2014, 09:53:43 PM
^that was it, thanks Lake  :)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 30, 2014, 07:52:54 AM
More from the JBJ...

Quote
What Main Street announcements mean for Springfield

Plans by a handful of retailers to set up shop on and near Main Street may be signs of life for the Springfield neighborhood, which has struggled to attract a critical mass of businesses.

“There are a lot of cool things happening in Springfield,” said Bill Hoff, president of the Springfield Preservation and Revitalization group. “A lot of them are still working on the final product, but in six months there should be quite a few new shops."

full article: http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2014/07/29/what-main-street-announcements-mean-for.html

In addition to what was mentioned in the article, The St. Augustine Paper Company purchased a store front on the 1500 block of Main for a satellite location, new offices going in at 5th & Main, martial arts biz relocating next to Avela Day Spa on the 1400 block of Main, and a regularly scheduled farmer's market-ish event will be starting in the Fall.

Good to see new ventures on Main Street.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: ChriswUfGator on July 30, 2014, 08:06:57 AM
most of them had no help from SPAR, btw.  Wonder why Bill is out in front of this?


Good question.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 30, 2014, 11:44:46 AM
You should see some local television news coverage of this soon, as well.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 30, 2014, 06:14:57 PM
Quote
Iconic, shuttered Pearl Club to turn into yoga studio

The once-popular Pearl Club off Main Street in Springfield will soon be home to a yoga studio and eatery.
Wilson Kaiser bought the historic building at 1101 N Main St. two months ago for $195,000. Kaiser said the new operation, which has been approved for changes by the city’s historical commission, will be a collaboration of three businesses.

“The heart is a yoga studio, but that’s only part of it,” Kaiser said. “There’s going to be a full service café with food and different drinks, as well as a wine bar.”

full article: http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2014/07/30/iconic-shuttered-pearl-club-to-turn-into-yoga.html
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JayBird on July 30, 2014, 06:20:52 PM
most of them had no help from SPAR, btw.  Wonder why Bill is out in front of this?

And just when I was about to comment on how this is also a booster shot for SPAR bc media and social networks are touting their success right now. If they weren't involved, that's a shame bc it would've been wonderful opportunity. I wasn't around for their ... debacles ... but I've always hoped they'd stage a comeback and be the pushing force of revitalization for the neighborhood.

Doesn't take away from the excitement of this news though.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 30, 2014, 07:03:49 PM
OF course the expansion at Uptown has a lot to do with the disappearance of City Kidz ice cream and sandwich shop and the vacant space just sitting there with no potential leasers.

City Kidz's owner's health is the reason why they closed.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: strider on July 30, 2014, 07:36:38 PM
While SPAR, or rather a few involved with SPAR, have done some pretty good things for some of the businesses wishing to locate in Historic Springfield, the biggest issue is how they immediately approach with suspicion and then, if you are OK in their book and want to play by their rules, then things are pretty good.  If you are not what they want or do not want to play by their rules, well, they can go all torches and pitchforks on you.  Or, as they seem to be trying to do more recently, talk nice to your face and then.... well, let's just say they don't play very very nice behind those closed doors.  It just seems that some involved and primarily the current leadership are not very accepting of things or people they do not like.   They have been this way for decades and just think back to how populated Main Street was in the boom years. (it was worse than it is today...) Goes to show how successful this type of attitude truly is.

Rather than credit SPAR, I would think the true credit for the renewed interest in Main Street goes to John Wells and the Main Street Cruise, the lowered rents and capital costs and the influx of new and younger residents of all social economic groups coming into the area due to the more reasonable 2003 ish prices.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fieldafm on July 30, 2014, 08:04:40 PM
Quote
OF course the expansion at Uptown has a lot to do with the disappearance of City Kidz ice cream and sandwich shop

Unfortunately, Pastor Bush suffered a serious health incident and could no longer operate the business.  He's a good guy, I miss the shop.. but more importantly I hope that he and his family can recover from the health-related challenges they are facing right now.

They are really nice people.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: jcjohnpaint on July 30, 2014, 08:08:47 PM
While SPAR, or rather a few involved with SPAR, have done some pretty good things for some of the businesses wishing to locate in Historic Springfield, the biggest issue is how they immediately approach with suspicion and then, if you are OK in their book and want to play by their rules, then things are pretty good.  If you are not what they want or do not want to play by their rules, well, they can go all torches and pitchforks on you.  Or, as they seem to be trying to do more recently, talk nice to your face and then.... well, let's just say they don't play very very nice behind those closed doors.  It just seems that some involved and primarily the current leadership are not very accepting of things or people they do not like.   They have been this way for decades and just think back to how populated Main Street was in the boom years. (it was worse than it is today...) Goes to show how successful this type of attitude truly is.

Rather than credit SPAR, I would think the true credit for the renewed interest in Main Street goes to John Wells and the Main Street Cruise, the lowered rents and capital costs and the influx of new and younger residents of all social economic groups coming into the area due to the more reasonable 2003 ish prices.

Sounds a lot like the mob!
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 30, 2014, 08:11:21 PM
OF course the expansion at Uptown has a lot to do with the disappearance of City Kidz ice cream and sandwich shop and the vacant space just sitting there with no potential leasers.

City Kidz's owner's health is the reason why they closed.

Speaking of 3rd & Main, I believe their commercial spaces are all leased up now: Uptown just committed long term, Terra Wise & Reputation Ink just moved in, Feature 23 has a space, and Sweet Pete's is doing manufacturing in the former City Kidz space.

Stephen: Your fictional tall tales of what goes on in SPR are enthralling, as usual. I'm entertained.



Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 31, 2014, 09:20:25 AM
Here's more local media on the new businesses making their way to SPR.

First Coast News video: http://www.firstcoastnews.com/story/news/local/2014/07/30/boosting-business-in-springfield/13381587/

WJXT story: http://www.news4jax.com/news/new-businesses-for-springfield/27239744

Wil's project at 1st & Main (in video) should start work next month.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 31, 2014, 09:27:22 AM
Quote
OF course the expansion at Uptown has a lot to do with the disappearance of City Kidz ice cream and sandwich shop

Unfortunately, Pastor Bush suffered a serious health incident and could no longer operate the business.  He's a good guy, I miss the shop.. but more importantly I hope that he and his family can recover from the health-related challenges they are facing right now.

They are really nice people.

Yes.  I was sad to hear, and hope the best for him as well.  (as I think pretty much everyone who knows him does)

Just remarking on the background of retail in the neighborhood.

Btw, has anyone in the neighborhood done a fundraiser or anything for him?  He did donate a lot of time and space to the community.  In most places there would have already been an event.

I'm not sure but he and his wife are pretty good people. Perhaps we should. What do you have in mind?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: thelakelander on July 31, 2014, 09:42:27 AM
I'm not sure they need advertising but I'll try to contact his wife and see how we can best help.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 31, 2014, 09:53:29 AM
I'm not sure they need advertising but I'll try to contact his wife and see how we can best help.

Lake, SAMBA was planning a bbq competition to benefit the family at one point. They may have done some of the foot work already.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JaxUnicorn on July 31, 2014, 10:16:38 AM
I'm not sure they need advertising but I'll try to contact his wife and see how we can best help.
I think doing something to help the family is a great idea and think before anything is done we (someone) needs to find out what they need, if anything.  :)
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 31, 2014, 11:01:51 AM
I'd defer to those who have already done some planning on this subject. But, as always, I'd be happy to pitch in where I can.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Cary on July 31, 2014, 12:24:34 PM
I respectfully disagree with the way that Stephen Dare consistently attacks Bill Hoff.  I do not think that it is appropriate or professional.  If you knew how much he does for our neighborhood, you would be ashamed of your numerous personal attacks.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Cary on July 31, 2014, 12:37:52 PM
Stephen, the world is not all Christian and even those that have moral values sometimes have a lot on their plate. I am asked constantly to donate my time and efforts, but I chose to limit my participation so that I can spend quality time with my family (who is my first priority). 

Your use of sarcasm is noted, however, not respected.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Cary on July 31, 2014, 12:58:51 PM
Bill was the first person to welcome me to the neighborhood.  I only see positive words and actions from him.   It appears to me that you enjoy antagonizing him simply for your own entertainment. 

Is calling someone out the "Christian" thing to do, or would taking a leadership role yourself in the event YOU envisioned be more appropriate.

I do not speak for Bill, but I could not hold my contempt for your actions any longer.  My phone number is in my profile if you feel the need to justify yourself.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Bill Hoff on July 31, 2014, 02:03:07 PM
Hi Cary.

Thanks for the support, but anyone who's been here long enough knows all about his shtick.

Hopefully we'll see you at tomorrow's First Friday party - this one's always one of the best.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: fsquid on August 01, 2014, 12:37:25 AM
who doesn't like camera time though?
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: JaxByDefault on August 01, 2014, 01:00:59 AM
Certainly not getting into this fight other than to say I rather liked the idea of a flea market/antique/vintage space at 3rd and Walnut. I wish they could hold a monthly/weekly event in the parking lot with other vendors and food trucks -- a boot sale and craft market. Cheap to get running and it would bring people to the neighborhood. Rent in Riverside is going up; all of the antique shops and flea markets will need to relocate somewhere. Bars, clubs, and vintage shops have have typically been the first new business to make it successfully in every renewal neighborhood in which I've ever lived.

Happy to see St. Augustine Paper in the neighborhood. I love that store. Miss the liveliness of the Pearl, but I'm glad the Yoga studio is going ahead with their plans for the space.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: tufsu1 on August 01, 2014, 11:01:25 AM
I'd defer to those who have already done some planning on this subject. But, as always, I'd be happy to pitch in where I can.
so, no.  SPAR will not be co sponsoring an appreciation benefit for one of the merchants who donated and contributed to your organization.
Well, Lake, Im still in.  Jax Unicorn, perhaps we can talk to Carl or one of  the other spaces to see what we can do.
Its a good cause, so why not see it through.

I'm pretty sure SPAR is not just Bill Hoff...and I doubt that he can speak for the organization without some board discussion first.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: Demosthenes on August 01, 2014, 11:37:37 AM
Lets be honest also, there is absolutely nothing Bill or anyone else can say that will change the tone of the rhetoric. SPAR is Dares boogie man, and will continue to be until it either disbands (even then, we would have to hear about it about once a year, when we are reminded about how evil they are and how right Stephen was) or until.... never mind, they will forever and always be Dares boogieman.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: whyisjohngalt on December 28, 2015, 08:21:06 AM
self congratulatory
(2bcontinued)

The Pearl closed.  So did some of the Pawn shops.  There's about 4 minority owned small businesses that weren't opened then between 3rd and 8th.  The 2008 economic downturn wasn't anything to scoff at.  The car wash is still open.  And with some thanks to SPR, the 3rd and Main complex built.  Oh, and SPR also helped promote the classic car drive in with grilling happening specifically in the lot mentioned.
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: whyisjohngalt on December 28, 2015, 09:38:29 PM
yawn
Title: Re: Is Springfield a viable retail market?
Post by: whyisjohngalt on December 28, 2015, 10:48:10 PM
self congratulatory
(2bcontinued)

The Pearl closed.  So did some of the Pawn shops.  .... The 2008 economic downturn wasn't anything to scoff at.  The car wash is still open. .

Yes.  those were my points. (including self congratulations) But you might try reading the 2008 article and thread. Its informative.

What about the reality of the positive effects of SPR initiatives?  Like the 3rd and Main development and the 3rd Sat classic car thing?  And Porchfest?  Frankly, some of the highlights of living here.